It’s going to be two more days before the slumping San Jose Sharks take the ice again, but when they do, they’re going to face the St. Louis Blues. Actually, the Blues had been in somewhat of the same boat as the Sharks earlier this month: they lost their first February game and proceeded to string together four more losses in a row to make for a somewhat unhappy February.
However, they’re turning it around now and are actually rolling on a three-game win streak. They beat the Detroit Red Wings 4-3 in overtime on Feb. 13, then torched the Calgary Flames 5-2 two days later and came to the Northwest Division-leading Vancouver Canucks riding this tentative two-game win streak.
Jake Allen has been a big part of this success. Called up from the AHL to help with the team’s sticky goalie situation–Jaroslav Halak has been injured, but is just about ready to come back into the lineup–he’s been in net for those two wins and the 4-3 shootout victory the Blues put up against the Canucks this evening.
Allen denied both Vancouver shooters while both St. Louis shooters found the back of the net to get to the win. But before the tiebreaker became necessary, TJ Oshie, Andrew McDonald and Patrik Berglund all put up goals. That was Oshie’s fifth, McDonald’s third and Berglund’s eighth of the season. Berglund currently leads the entire team in goals scored, but Vladimir Tarasenko is not that far behind him–six goals–and he’s scored as recently as Feb. 13.
The Blues also boast 10 players who have at least 10 points to their name right now. On the other hand, the Sharks only have four players who have broken through the 10 barrier.
St. Louis has gone 3-0 on their short February road trip and the team is coming back home with renewed momentum and energy. Before the Sharks take them on at 8 p.m. Eastern (7 p.m. Central) on Feb. 19, they could do well to remember that–and try to get the upper hand.
If not, it will be their eighth loss in a row and San Jose could be staring at an identity crisis.