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|St. Louis Blues
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The St. Louis Blues will try to take the series lead in an intense Game Five matchup. This First Round series has been a back-and-forth one and is tied at 2-2. The Blues won Game One 4-0 behind a David Perron hat trick, but the Wild fired back in Game Two and won 6-2. Kirill Kaprizov had a hat trick, and Joel Eriksson had two goals and one assist. Minnesota crushed St. Louis in Game Three 5-1. Kaprizov and Eriksson each scored one goal, and Marc-Andre Fleury had an impressive 32 saves for the Wild. The Blues took Game Four at home 5-2. Jordan Kyrou and David Perron each had two goals, and Jordan Binnington saved 28-30 shots.
The St. Louis Blues were a solid team all season long. They went on a few short losing streaks but made up for it with a handful of longer winning streaks. They finished the last month of their season on a high note, winning 12 of their last 16 games.
The Blues have had some unusual suspects step up in the Playoffs. Vladimir Tarasenko, Robert Thomas, Pavel Buchnvich, and Jordan Kyrou did much of the heavy lifting during the season, but besides Kyrou (who has three goals), they have been quiet so far. Instead, David Perron and Ryan O’Reilly have taken over on offense. Perron, a veteran winger, leads St. Louis with five goals and has two assists. O’Reilly, also a veteran, has three goals and three assists. Perron and O’Reilly have been critical to the Blues in the Playoffs, but Tarasenko and Buchnevich need to get more involved.
The Minnesota Wild had some low points in the season but went on a few very long winning streaks in the second half of the year.
The Wild have seen some outstanding play from Kirill Kaprizov, Ryan Hartman, and Joel Eriksson in the playoffs. Kaprizov has scored five goals on 20 shots, Hartman is yet to score but has five assists, and Eriksson has three goals and two assists. These three have been game-changers for the Wild and need to keep on taking control. If they continue to play well, Minnesota will win this series.
Minnesota is playing at home and coming off a win in Game Four, so I have to pick them to win Game Five. This will be another high-scoring game, so I would recommend watching it.
|St. Louis Blues
|49-22-11 (3rd in Central Division)
|53-22-7 (2nd in Central Division)
|David Perron (7)
|Kirill Kaprizov (6)
|David Perron (5)
|Kirill Kaprizov (6)
|Ryan O’Reilly (3)
|Ryan Hartman (5)
|Colton Parayko (2)
|Jacob Middleton (7)
|Shots (Per Game)
|Kirill Kaprizov (5.00)
The St. Louis Blues are the underdogs but will win if they draw penalties and involve Vladimir Tarasenko and Pavel Buchnevich.
The Blues had the second-best power-play unit during the season and have continued their power-play dominance in the Playoffs. They are converting almost 28% of their power-plays, and over 40% of their goals have come on the power-play. The Blues must draw penalties and give themselves an advantage.
Vladimir Tarasenko and Pavel Buchnevich were key players for the Blues during the season. Tarasenko led the Blues in points (82) and goals (34), and Buchnevich put up similar numbers to Tarasenko. With that being said, these two stars have done very little in this series. Tarasenko has two goals but a +/- of -8, and Buchnevich only has two assists and a +/- of -2. They need to turn it around and return to being key pieces of this Blues team.
The Wild are playing at home and are the favorites, but they will only win if they shoot as much as possible and pass to Kirill Kaprizov.
The Wild have scored 11 combined goals in their two wins in this series. They have faced some inconsistent goalie play from St. Louis’ netminders, so they need to get the puck on net. St. Louis will probably let one or two goals slip in if they do.
Kirill Kaprizov has been a dominant force in these playoffs. He scored a hat trick in Game Two and scored one goal each in the last two games. His teammates need to pass him the puck because he will score.
David Perron played well during the season, but he has exceeded expectations during the playoffs. He had 27 goals and 30 assists during the season but has five goals and two assists during the playoffs.
Perron is scoring on over 25% of his shots, so it is safe to say that his teammates just need to pass him the puck.
Jacob Middleton has not stood out in this series, but he has been very efficient. He only has one assist but leads the Wild with a +/- of 7. Middleton does not need to do anything different in this game. He just needs to keep playing smart hockey.
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|Pittsburgh Penguins vs Minnesota Wild Information
|St. Louis Blues vs Minnesota Wild
|Xcel Energy Center, Saint Paul, Minnesota
|Tuesday, May 10, 9:30 PM EST
|How to Watch
Max Heering graduated from the University of Kansas Sport Management program in May 2020. Max follows and writes about the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, college football, and college basketball. In his free time, you can catch Max draining threes on the basketball court. Email: [email protected]More info on Max Heering
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