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Stanley Cup Final

Blues' power-play struggles in Stanley Cup Final continue in Game 6 loss

Go 0-for-4 against Bruins with chance to clinch first NHL championship

by Louie Korac / Correspondent

ST. LOUIS -- The St. Louis Blues failed in their initial attempt to clinch the first Stanley Cup championship in their history, and their anemic power play had a lot to do with it.

They went 0-for-4 with the power play in a 5-1 loss to the Boston Bruins in Game 6 of the Cup Final on Sunday, dropping them to 1-for-18 in the best-of-7 series.

St. Louis did not blame its power play for the loss but acknowledged some success with the man-advantage certainly would have helped.

"Well, we had 12 shots," coach Craig Berube said. "We did have momentum, we had some good looks. We didn't score. [Tuukka] Rask made some good saves.

"Can it be better? Yeah, it has to be better. It could have won us the game tonight, but I don't think it was ... we had good looks. We had 12 shots on the power play tonight, but we've definitely got to bury a couple."


[RELATED: Complete Stanley Cup Final coverage | Blues miss opportunity to win Cup at home]


Game 7 is at Boston on Wednesday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, SN, TVAS).

The Blues got their first power play early in the first period when Bruins forward Sean Kuraly flipped the puck into the stands for a delay of game penalty at 2:42. They had three shots on goal on that opportunity, including one from Brayden Schenn at point-blank range that Rask saved.

"I think we're trying to stay compact and not giving them too much on the inside," Bruins center Patrice Bergeron said of their penalty kill. "I mean, Tuukka's made some big saves, obviously. I think that's where we're trying to do the right thing."

St. Louis had three shots on goal during its second power play, which spanned the end of the first and beginning of the second after Boston defenseman Zdeno Chara was called for interference at 18:21.

Video: BOS@STL, Gm6: Berube on turning point in Game 6 loss

"I think we had some better looks," Blues captain Alex Pietrangelo said. "We've got to find a way to score, but we definitely generated a lot more momentum.

"... We got some chances on the power play. They got one on the power play, (Brad Marchand scoring) on the 5-on-3 [at 8:40 of the first], and after that, it's a tight game, it's back-and-forth. We get some zone time, but we have to get more pucks to the net and a little bit more traffic. Maybe get one of those old dirty ones."

The Blues were trailing 1-0 when they got their last two power plays, in the second period after Marchand was whistled at 9:11 for tripping Pietrangelo and defenseman Charlie McAvoy was penalized at 13:43 for tripping Vladimir Tarasenko. They had five shots on goal during Marchand's penalty but only one with McAvoy in the box.

St. Louis came closest to scoring a power-play goal during the Marchand penalty, when Pietrangelo's backhand from the left face-off dot hit the left goal post at 9:55 before going off Rask's back. With the puck headed toward the goal line, McAvoy batted it out of midair into Rask's back, and Bergeron cleared it.

"I didn't know if it was going in or going wide. I just swatted at it," McAvoy said. "Just reflexes."

The Blues know getting one of those to go in will go a long way toward winning Game 7.

"We did have some good looks and some good chances, but you need the result," said center Ryan O'Reilly, who scored the Blues' only goal at 12:01 of the third to make it 3-1. "There were a few times there where it could have given us the spark we needed, to grab the momentum. Unfortunately, we didn't. But we've got to let this one go and bounce back quick and get it done there."


Listen: Game 7 preview from NHL Fantasy on Ice podcast

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