Location: St. Louis
Habs Goalie: Price (L)
Opposition Goalie: Halak (W)
Habs goalscorers: Halpern
Opposition goalscorers: Backes, McDonald, D'Agostini, Oshie
We worked very hard for our only goal, all five players did. In fact, I think that it was our best burst of effort all game. Cammalleri got the ball rolling by controlling the puck very well in the Blues' end. Pleks then took over and did a good job to get in to Mara. Paul quickly got the puck to the pinching Picard. Alex then skated in and instead of shooting made an amazing pass to a wide-open Halpern who merely had to re-direct the puck in the open side.
Montreal didn't look too strong in this one so it is a hard dome to choose. I did, however, like Mike's effort on the goal and thought that he did an OK job the rest of the way. With Patches out we really need him to pick it up as I doubt anyone from the 3rd or 4th lines is going to score at a higher rate than they have. To me, he is a player that we must focus on in the last 14 games.
He was our only goal-scorer tonight and that has to count for something. Any goal, in fact, from him seems like a bonus as he isn't the one you would expect to be scoring. He was also OK in our own end and on the PK.
David played a good game, but I felt that we didn't use him enough tonight. Just because he is on the 4th line isn't reason enough for him to get the least amount of ice-time. I am not asking for him to be used 15+ minutes a game, but when he is on relative to the rest of the group this must be recognized.
Roman Hamrlik - Game Puck
This wasn't the best game that Roman has played this season, not even the best in the past few weeks, but I did feel that he was there to compete. He made quite a few very solid plays in his own end that stood out to me and likely saved the Habs a few goals-against. He had the most ice-time on the team which I think is encouraging as we need him to be on his game now more than ever and we need him to be ready to play big minutes down the stretch.
Alex stayed out of trouble in his own end and made up a decent first-time partnership with Mara. Those two would likely be the two I would sit if given the choice, but it is nice to know that they are ready and capable. His pass to Halpern on the goal was fantastic and was another reminder that he indeed has some decent offence in him.
Carey started with some great saves and kept the Habs within striking distance for most of the game. The third goal was very nice and confirmed the loss that we were all expecting. It was a slow, unemotional and somewhat dull game, but Price was there, as usual, to give his team a chance.
I think that the players, like me, found it hard to get into this game. We have all spent 48 hours worrying about Pacioretty and questioning our faith in this league and this game. To then have to travel halfway across the continent and face a good team and good goalie is a tall task. We certainly had our chances and could have won, but I think on this night the better, more focused team won. I can, however, live with this loss as it is a no consequence game really. My focus really has shifted away from results over the past few hours and I still need a few days to start thinking that they really matter. I am happy with our spot in the standings and feel that we should make the playoffs. I do expect that my interest and the players' passion and energy level will return, though as it can only go up from here. This game, however, did offer one bright spot as it was a chance to see Halak again. Jaro played a solid game and deserved the win. His season, and the Blues', isn't what he had hoped for, but I think that that team will improve over the next few years and it will be interesting to see if he'll do for them what none of us can forget he did for us.