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Allen wants to be backbone for Blues

by Chris Pinkert / St. Louis Blues

LOS ANGELES - Despite struggling between the pipes as of late, Jake Allen was back in goal Thursday night when the Blues met the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center.

Allen, who gave up three goals on 11 shots Tuesday against the Bruins, said he was looking forward to the opportunity to get back on track during the team's three-game road trip out west.

"It's not going my way right now and I need to find a way to be the backbone of this team in here and give the boys a chance," Allen said after Tuesday's game against Boston. "You can't dwell on the negative and you can't keep leaning on the positive… you've got to move on. There's another game right away."

Allen is 17-10-3 this season, but his 2.70 goals-against average and .902 save-percentage isn't where he wants it to be, and he'd be the first to tell you that.

"Jake is like everybody else on our team," Blues Head Coach Ken Hitchcock said. "We've got to battle this thing together. It can be a real rallying tool if we use it the right way. He's got to rally and we've got to rally around him.

"You have to make decisions and if he's your guy, he's your guy," Hitchcock said of sticking with Allen. "It's easy to stick with people when things are going well. Things aren't going well for Jake, and he knows he's got to be better and he can be better. Let's give him the opportunity. When you've made a declaration that this is your starting goalie, to ask a guy to sit on it for an extended period of time doesn't help you. Might as well get back in the saddle and get going again."

For Allen, getting back on track begins with believing in yourself, which is how he made it to the NHL in the first place.

"I got here for a reason," Allen said. "Just be confident in there and trust that everything that you've done to get here is going to work. It's tough times right now, but definitely better days are ahead."

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