Another series, another game 7 for the St. Louis Blues. Game 6 did not go according to plan for the Note with three early goals against Brian Elliot in the 1st period. While the defense in front of Elliot was porous at best, Ken Hitchcock pulled his starting netminder in favor of Jake Allen, who hadn’t gotten game reps in over a month. Allen would stop all seven shots he faced, and just like that, we have a goaltender controversy before a game 7. Perfect timing.
Hitchcock to announce game 7 goalie tomorrow. #stlblues players unwavering in their support of Brian Elliott.
— David Solomon (@solomonsside) May 10, 2016
Smart money is on Elliot stil being the guy on Wednesday night. He is still posting an impressive .926% save percentage, and no goaltender has faced more shots this playoff season than Elliot. It averages out to almost 35 shots a game. The man has stood on his head time and time again, and for good reason has one of the team leaders behind him.
“Els has been the MVP of our team for the first two rounds,” says captain David Backes. “We have give up some glorious chances that he’s balied us out on…Brian Elliot has been our best player, if it’s not him tomorrow, I’d be surprised.”
So would most everyone else I think.
And Elliot would be a big reason why this team would enter another game 7 with some confidence. It’s confidence born out of experience, knocking out the Blackhawks in a game 7 a little more than two weeks ago.
“The experience matters,” says Hitchcock.”We have one way to play. We just keep coming after you, and hopefully we make you crack. That’s the way we played against Chicago, it’s the same way we’re gonna play tomorrow.”
The Blues also have a built-in confidence on the road, going 4-2 away from Scottrade Center so far this playoff season.
“I think road and home is not relevant anymore.” explained Hitchcock.”We’ve played consistent all playoffs, and that’s given us a little bit of an edge.”
“We just got push ourselves over the top right now.”
It’s that ability to push over the top that an Elliot-led team has already shown. It’ll be an Elliot-led team that gets it done tomorrow. We may not know it to be 100% as of yet, but I’m sure inside that lockeroom, they know the answer.