When the Colorado Avalanche and St. Louis Blues met on Sunday for the first game of a back-to-back set, the Avalanche abused Blues goaltender Brian Elliott en route to a 5-3 win and prevented St. Louis from clinching a playoff spot. On Tuesday night the Blues got some revenge, limiting the Avalanche to one goal and only 18 shots, and clinched a playoff spot with the 3-1 win.
Elliott’s amazing run in April has helped the Blues stay in good shape heading into the playoffs, and Sunday’s loss is the only blemish on his record over the past five games.
The Blues got the win thanks to a great all-around performance, as they scored two power play goals and killed off all three chances the Avalanche had with the man-advantage. An improved defense continues to impress, as the low shot total reflects. Trade deadline acquisition Jordan Leopold had a pair of assists, while Chris Stewart, Patrik Berglund and Andy McDonald scored goals to lead the offense. The power play performance was especially encouraging, as the Blues have only connected at extra strength in two of their last 10 games.
St. Louis has two regular season games remaining, and could still vault past the Los Angeles Kings and San Jose Sharks if they win out. That would put the Blues in fourth place, but would also require the Sharks and Kings losing out. With no solid news about Jaroslav Halak making a return, Elliott will need to keep stepping up for the Blues if the team hopes to get very far in the playoffs.