The St. Louis Blues head to Ottawa with two big points on their minds. No way can they afford to take the lowly Senators lightly in this spot. All the Sens have been doing at this point is trying to spoil some seasons around the league. They will be able to provide a helping hand in stressing the Blues out if a win happens tonight. The Blues, thanks to a monster run in February, are 3rd in the Western Conference with 79 points.
That sounds good, but they are just 5 points ahead of the Wild, who are the first team out in the conference. With each passing day and win, the magic number for the Blues will begin to get smaller, though. In what is a winnable game, the Blues have to win a game like this, which should be seen as an easy 2 points. Nothing comes easy in the NHL, though, and the Senators while down and out, nearly caught the Flyers and Islanders sleeping in their last two games.
The Sens ultimately came up short, both by scores of 3-2. It extended their current losing streak to four games and they still only have 1 win since the trade deadline. Pretty much their entire offence was sent packing, leaving little playmakers for the Sens to create explosive plays. It’s a nice opportunity for younger guys like Brady Tkachuk to step in more important roles, but it isn’t helping generate wins now.
That’s not exactly the objective for the Sens at this point. However, they also can’t go into tank mode because they don’t have their first-round pick. That goes to the Avalanche, who are drooling over the opportunity to draft Jack Hughes. So, other than developing younger players, there’s nothing for the Sens to aim for now. Head below for our free Blues vs. Senators pick.
St. Louis Blues vs. Ottawa Senators Pick
The emergence of the Blues really started to take shape with the play of Jordan Binnington in net. With Jake Allen struggling as the starter, Binnington saw an opening and seized his chance to grab the starting role in St. Louis. He is coming off only his fourth loss of the season, which was a 3-1 loss to the Coyotes. They’ve lost both of their last two games, with Allen taking a loss against the Sharks. For Binnington, his numbers still are terrific, with a record of 16-4 and 1.81 GAA. Without his assistance, the Blues are not a playoff team at the moment.
They’d be trying to put a run together to play catchup in the next two weeks. The offence is going to have to get something going, though. It’s tough to envision them going too far with an average of 2.87 goals per game in the postseason. In their last ten outings, they’ve notched just 2.1 per game. Binnington might be able to steal some games, but in the NHL this season, offence is going to have to follow. They likely aren’t going to have to worry about goal scoring from the Senators in this matchup tonight.
Ottawa has failed to generate any kind of confidence since the deadline. The departures of Duchene, Dzingel, and Stone meant that almost half of their point production was immediately gone from the roster. They’ve scored more than 2 goals just twice since they left town.
The Sens have recorded 2 goals in each of their last three games, and an average of 1.9 in their previous ten contests. They will have to find a way to score goals against a solid defensive unit of the Blues this evening. I don’t see it happening, but maybe they can hang around like they did against Bruins and Flyers. The Blues’ offence hasn’t been scaring anyone lately. I see this one going UNDER the total on Thursday night in Kanata.