Here is the blunt version of this evening's preview of the St. Louis Blues versus the Los Angeles Kings. There are a lot of crazy things that could be expected in this series. This is one that could be more entertaining than the block party between the New York Rangers and Washington Capitals. It is one of those to keep an eye on because of the goaltending, scoring chances, and of course the hits. Expect plenty of physicality in this series.
Jonathan Quick and Brian Elliott will likely battle this one tooth and nail barring Jaroslav Halak actually becoming healthy enough to play. That is a tall task to ask but goaltending will definitely be prominent this series. However, this will not be the only factor. Again, here is the schedule with the gameday.
Saturday, April 28, 2012
|Washington||1||at||3||NY Rangers||Boxscore | Log|
|Los Angeles||at||St. Louis||7:30 PM | Gameday|
There are always the subplots that line a series but we are only worried about Game 1 here. Physicality again is going to key this battle ladies and gentlemen. If you do not think it does, then you may not know this game. Let's go here!
So that would be Brian Elliott versus Jonathan Quick in this series. Honestly throw out the first round records ladies and gentlemen. Game 1 will feature these two and their ability to stop scoring chances. Clearly if the series spikes a bit tempo wise, this one might actually favor Jonathan Quick and the Kings. If shot totals are moderate and hit totals are as well, then that favors Brian Elliott and the Blues. What is clear is that LA has to up the tempo via its physicality and scoring chances. That 1-2 punch is the key if Los Angeles is able to upset St. Louis.
That is not to say St. Louis cannot play physical because they can but the way the Blues play is to keep everything at a "manageable" rate. If shot totals are in the 20-29 range then St. Louis would be happy and in theory so would LA but if the chances are higher, then LA may have a better chance.
Many think that Quick has a better chance of shining because of his ability to play almost tirelessly and well. He has the ability to stop 40 shots a night throughout a two week battle. Does Brian Elliott have that same capability? That is what we may find out. The unknown versus the known in a high stakes battle to determine one of the conference finalists.
THREE STARS FOR TONIGHT:
1. Andy McDonald
2. Anze Kopitar
3. Brian Elliott
Thank you everyone and have a great night as Game 1 gets underway in what shapes up to be a true streetfight.