July 4, 2015

Pronger, an All-Star in eight of his nine seasons with the Blues, selected to Hockey’s Hall of Fame

Chris Pronger (photo/NHL)

Chris Pronger (photo/NHL)

Defenseman Chris Pronger, who spent half of his NHL career with the Blues, winning the league’s MVP award in 2000, was selected to the Hockey Hall of Fame on Monday. Pronger was chosen in his first season of eligibility. He was an All-Star in eight of his nine seasons wearing the Blue Note.

Pronger is the only defenseman other than Bobby Orr to win the Hart Trophy and Norris Trophy in the same season, in 2000. He played 1,167 games in 18 NHL seasons starting with the Hartford Whalers, then St. Louis Blues, Edmonton Oilers, Ducks and Philadelphia Flyers.

Pronger won the 1997 World Championship with Canada, is a two-time Olympic gold medalist and won the Stanley Cup in 2007 with the Ducks; He also won gold at the 1993 World Junior Championship and reach the Cup Final with the Oilers in 2006 and the Flyers in 2010.

Pronger averaged more than 30 minutes per game in two seasons for the Blues, and more than 25 minutes per game in every full season he played from 1998-99 to 2009-10.

 

Puck drops Thursday, October 8th. Blues open the 2015-16 season at home against the Edmonton Oilers

St. Louis Blues Patrik Berglund of Sweden (21) celebrates his third period goal with teammates against the San Jose Sharks at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis on January 8, 2015.   Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI

St. Louis Blues Patrik Berglund of Sweden (21) celebrates his third period goal with teammates against the San Jose Sharks at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis on January 8, 2015. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI

OCTOBER 2015
Thursday, Oct. 8 vs. Edmonton Oilers – 7 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 10 at Minnesota Wild – 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Oct. 13 at Calgary Flames – 8 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 15 at Edmonton Oilers – 9 p.m.
Friday, Oct. 16 at Vancouver Canucks – 9 p.m.
Sunday, Oct. 18 at Winnipeg Jets – 4 p.m.
Tuesday, Oct. 20 at Montreal Canadiens – 6:30 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 24 vs. New York Islanders – 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Oct. 27 vs. Tampa Bay Lightning – 7 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 29 vs. Anaheim Ducks – 7 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 31 vs. Minnesota Wild – 7 p.m.

NOVEMBER 2015
Tuesday, Nov. 3 vs. Los Angeles Kings – 7 p.m.
Wednesday, Nov. 4 at Chicago Blackhawks – 7 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 7 at Nashville Predators – 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Nov. 10 at New Jersey Devils – 6 p.m.
Thursday, Nov. 12 at New York Rangers – 6 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 14 vs. Chicago Blackhawks – 7 p.m.
Monday, Nov. 16 vs. Winnipeg Jets – 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Nov. 17 at Columbus Blue Jackets – 6 p.m.
Thursday, Nov. 19 vs. Buffalo Sabres – 7 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 21 vs. Detroit Red Wings – 7 p.m.
Monday, Nov. 23 at Buffalo Sabres – 6 p.m.
Wednesday, Nov. 25 at Pittsburgh Penguins – 6 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 28 vs. Columbus Blue Jackets – 7 p.m.

DECEMBER 2015
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Allen and Tarasenko honored at the NHL Awards Show. Two players the Blues can build their future around

St. Louis Blues Vladimir Tarasenko of Russia skates down the ice against the Minnesota Wild in the first period at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis on April 11, 2015. Takasenko returns to the lineup after missing five games with a lower body injury.    Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI

St. Louis Blues Vladimir Tarasenko of Russia skates down the ice against the Minnesota Wild in the first period at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis on April 11, 2015. . Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI

Blues forward Vladimir Tarasenko was named a 2014-15 Second-Team All-Star at the NHL Awards banquet in Las Vegas on Wednesday. Blues goalie Jake Allen was named to the NHL’s All-Rookie team.

Tarasenko, 23, tied for 10th in the NHL overall with 73 points, fifth with 37 goals and was the youngest Blues player to record a 30-goal season since Brendan Shanahan in 1991-92.   He also made his first career NHL All-Star Game appearance in January in Columbus.

Allen, 24, posted a 22-7-4 record with a 2.28 goals-against average, a .913 save-percentage and four shutouts in 37 appearances last season. He led all rookie goaltenders in wins and shutouts, becoming the second player in Blues history to lead the NHL in wins (Mike Liut – 1979-80).

Allen also tied a Blues rookie record for shutouts.

Another “one and done” for the Blues. Knocked out in six games by Minnesota

Minnesota Wild goaltender Devan Dubnyk keeps an eye on a flying puck in the first period against the St. Louis Blues of Game Five of the Stanley Cup Western Conference Quarterfinals at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis on April 24, 2015. Minnesota won the game 4-1.   Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI

Minnesota Wild goaltender Devan Dubnyk was on top of his game in the final two wins of the series. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI

Zach Parise scored twice and Devan Dubnyk made 30 saves to help the Minnesota Wild defeat the St. Louis Blues 4-1 in Game 6 to clinch the Western Conference First Round series at Xcel Energy Center on Sunday.

The Central Division-champion Blues have now been eliminated in the first round of the playoffs in three straight seasons.

Down 2-0 in the second, Blues coach Ken Hitchcock pulled Jake Allen in favor of Brian Elliott.  T.J. Oshie cut the deficit to 2-1 heading into the third.  Parise’s second of the game came 1:01 into the third to put the game out of reach. Nino Niederreiter added an empty-netter.

The Blues offense tanked after busting through for six goals against Dubnyk in game four.  The Blues scored just twice on 68 shots over the final two games.

“It sucks,” said captain David Backes.  “There’s no other summary for it.  Rather than go up a notch, we’re on a heels too much.”

The disappointments for the Blues offensively were:

Paul Stastny, 1 goal, 1 point, -3
T.J. Oshie, 1 goal, 1 assist, -3
Jori Lehtera, 0 goals, 2 assists, -2

Despite leading the Blues in scoring with six goals and one assist, Vladimir Tarasenko was also a -4.  Patrik Berglund and David Backes were the only top forwards on the top that were positive on the +/- side.

Hitch rips apart top line as Blues go down 2-1 to Wild in the series

Vladimir Tarasenko, who scored a hat trick in game two, was shutout in game three (photo/NHL.com/Blues)

Vladimir Tarasenko, who scored a hat trick in game two, was shutout in game three (photo/NHL.com/Blues)

It was repeat of game one.  The St. Louis Blues top line was ineffective for the second game in this playoff series with Minnesota and it proved costly as the Wild won on their home ice 3-0, to take a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven.

The line of Alex Steen (two assists), Vladimir Tarasenko (three goals) and Jori Lehtera (one assist), which led the Blues in Saturday’s win, did not register a shot on goal through the first two periods.  In an attempt to spark the team, Blues coach Ken Hitchcock broke the group up.

It didn’t matter.

“They skated a lot and wanted to assert their game and we let them by sitting on our heels and playing passive,” Blues captain David Backes said. “We let them come at us, come at us, come at us and the Granlund line scored two goals for them. They’re dynamite on the rush, they’ve shown that all series and they made us pay tonight.”

Zach Parise, Jason Pominville and Mikael Granlund combined for six points and Devan Dubnyk made 17 saves in the win.

Game 4 is Wednesday night from St. Paul with an 8:30 p.m. start.