It could have been a return of the nightmare that has plagued the St. Louis Blues this season—blown third period leads and games lost in shootouts. But the potential nightmare proved to be a dream-come-true in a 5-4 shootout win over the Oilers on Sunday.
After two scoreless shootouts, Dennis Wideman beat Michael Morrison in the third one, while Fernando Pisani missed his chance to tie it for the Oilers.
St. Louis and Edmonton traded four goals in the first period as the two teams went into the first intermission tied 2-2. Rookie Lee Stempniak got his eighth goal, while Keith Tkachuk netted his 11th for St. Louis. Stempniak struck again for St. Louis to give them a 3-2 lead in the second period.
At the 4:13 mark of the third period, Ryan Smith scored on a power play goal, assisted by former St. Louis Blue, Chirs Pringer. That tied it at 3-3. It stayed that way until Jay McClement scored with 3:36 to go in the game to give the Blues a 4-3 edge. But just 1:13 later, Georges Laraque scored to tie it at 4-4.
Curtis Sanford made 24 saves and allowed all four goals for St. Louis, but made up for his miscues with three stops in the shootout.
Three of the Blues are now headed to Torino for the Winter Olympics. Keith Tkachuk will represent the United States for the fourth time. The other Blues in the games are Peter Cajanek (Czech Republic) and Christian Backman (Sweden). Cajanek is going for the second time, while Backman is making his Olympic debut.