Sign in with your NHL account:
  • Submit
  • Or
  • Sign in with Google
 
 

Blues Make Commitment to Winning

In the last 34 games, the Blues have stormed into the playoff picture

Saturday, 03.28.2009 / 11:15 PM / St Louis Blues - Features
By Chris Pinkert  - St. Louis Blues
X
Share with your Friends


Blues Make Commitment to Winning
Thanks to a commitment by the entire roster, the Blues have put themselves into the playoff picture for the season's final stretch. (Getty Images)
Commitment.

It’s just one word, but it’s visible everywhere in the Blues’ locker room. It’s on the players' faces, it’s evident in their play on the ice and it’s written in big, bold letters on the wall.

“That’s not there by accident. That word means a lot to our team,” said goaltender Chris Mason, a player whose own commitment has helped the Blues get back into the playoff race as the NHL season enters its final stretch. “It’s a long schedule, it’s a grind here, and we’re at that point where we need that commitment on every single play.”

And every single play, they’re getting it.

No one could see this coming.

Just before training camp began, franchise defenseman Erik Johnson injured his knee in a team golf outing. Captain Eric Brewer has missed significant time with a herniated disk in his back and flashy sniper Paul Kariya has been out since November recovering from a bad hip. Andy McDonald, T.J. Oshie, Jay McKee and D.J. King have all missed significant time as well. In fact, the Blues have lost a whopping 433 man games to injury as of Mar. 28.

Yet here they are, in a heated battle for one of the final two positions in the Western Conference playoff picture.

“I think you can go back as far as probably January,” said Oshie. “We’ve been playing the same way since then, trying to get points every night and get back into the playoff hunt. For the most part, (we’re) just bearing down and getting the job done. When it comes down to it, we were working hard and not winning before. Now, we’re finding ways to win and that’s what it takes.”

Dating back to the Mar. 20 game at Calgary, the Blues are on a four-game winning streak and show no signs of stopping. If they can clinch a playoff spot, it will be their first appearance in the postseason since 2004, and they will have done it playing “playoff” games for the last several weeks.

“For the last month and change, it’s been a battle and a must-win situation every time we step on the ice,” said veteran forward Keith Tkachuk, who has chipped in another 20-goal season, the 15th of his career. “It feels like we’ve been playing a Game 7 here for the last month and a half, so we’re just going to stay fresh and take care of business.”

The word "commitment" is written above the dry-erase board inside the Blues' locker room.

Truth be told, “taking care of business” might be an understatement.

The Blues, once occupying the last spot in the Western Conference, have gone 20-8-6 in their last 34 games to move into a tie for the final playoff spot. With six of their last seven games on the road, clinching a playoff berth won’t be an easy task, but consider this: in the last 10 road games, the Blues are 6-2-2.

“This is our playoffs,” said Mason, referring to the final stretch of games. “If we don’t have success right now, we’re not getting there. This is our time, and we’re going to do everything we can to get there.”

Columbus, Chicago, Detroit, Dallas, Phoenix and Colorado make up the team’s remaining iternary, and each game will offer a different challenge. While the Blues can’t realistically expect to win them all, the players promise they’ll make every effort to keep their playoff hopes alive.

“To get to this point, we’ve been committed to the Blue Note, to each other. That’s the bottom line,” said Mason. “I think we’re a true example of what the word 'team' means. It goes with the things that are important attributes here: commitment, loyalty, sacrifice…and we do that for each other.”

Commitment.

With this team, it’s more than just writing on the wall.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
A. Steen 68 33 29 17 62
T. Oshie 79 21 39 19 60
D. Backes 74 27 30 14 57
J. Schwartz 80 25 31 28 56
A. Pietrangelo 81 8 43 20 51
K. Shattenkirk 81 10 35 1 45
V. Tarasenko 64 21 22 20 43
D. Roy 75 9 28 -1 37
J. Bouwmeester 82 4 33 26 37
V. Sobotka 61 9 24 14 33
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
B. Elliott 18 6 2 .922 1.96
R. Miller 25 30 4 .918 2.64

 
TICKETS
Single Game Tickets
Full Season Tickets
Half Season Plans
12-Game Plans
6-Game Packs
Group Tickets
Luxury Suites
My Account
NHL Ticket Exchange

TEAM
Team Roster
Prospects
Coaches
Front Office
Blues History
All-Time Player Roster
Chicago Wolves
Alaska Aces

SCHEDULE
Preseason
Regular Season
Schedule Downloads
Printable Schedule (PDF)

STATS
Player Stats
League Standings

NEWS
News
Features
Blues Overtime Blog

VIDEO
Game Highlights
GameDay
News & Interviews
All-Access
NHL Network

SOCIAL
Find a Player
Facebook
Twitter
Mobile App
E-mail Subscriptions

FANS
Hot Deals for Cool Fans
Photo Galleries
License Plates

COMMUNITY
Blues in the Community
Blues 14 Fund
50/50 Raffle Numbers

SHOP
Online Store
Blues Auctions
True Blues Authentics

stlouisblues.com is the official Web site of the St Louis Blues. St Louis Blues, stlouisblues.com and stlblues.com are trademarks of the St Louis Blues Hockey Club. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2014 St. Louis Blues Hockey Club and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

PRIVACY POLICY | ADCHOICES | TERMS OF USE | EMPLOYMENT & INTERNSHIPS | GUEST EXPERIENCE SURVEY | CONTACT US