Two of the top teams in the Western Conference’s Central Division met on Wednesday night, and their game definitely live up to its billing on “Rivalry Night.” The showdown between the St. Louis Blues and Chicago Blackhawks featured superb goaltending, scoring from star players, and plenty of physical play. A late goal from Alex Steen helped the Blues to a 3-2 victory, but both teams showed why they will likely return to the playoffs this season.
The Blackhawks got goals from Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews, both coming on the power play. Corey Crawford made 31 saves, but Jaroslav Halak stopped 26 at the other end to earn the win. Vladimir Tarasenko and David Backes scored the other goals for the Blues, who have won their first three games to start the season. St. Louis and Chicago will meet four more times during the regular season, and if this game was any indication those games will be must-see TV. The Blues added some key pieces in the offseason by bringing in Brenden Morrow, Derek Roy and Maxim Lapierre and so far those moves look to have paid off. Halak is off to a much better start than last season, which should be good news for the Blues as well. Wednesday’s game was their first real test of the season against a tough opponent, and they proved up to the test. Next, they’ll take on the New York Rangers and San Jose Sharks before meeting the Blackhawks again on Oct. 17.