Skip to main content
The Buzz

Stanley Cup Playoffs Buzz: How Blues reached Final

St. Louis' journey from last play took many turns; staff predictions for championship round

NHL.com @NHLdotcom

Welcome to the Stanley Cup Playoffs Buzz, a daily in-depth look at the 2019 NHL playoffs. The St. Louis Blues defeated the San Jose Sharks 5-1 in Game 6 of the Western Conference Final on Tuesday. The Blues advanced to the Stanley Cup Final for the first time since 1970 and will play the Boston Bruins. Game 1 is at TD Garden on Monday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, SN, CBC, TVAS).

 
Quick links

Here is the lastest news surrounding the Stanley Cup Final.

-- The Blues completed a journey from last place to the Cup Final with their Game 6 win on Tuesday. Adam Kimelman looks at thekey points of their magical run. 

-- The Blues used their forecheck and prodcution from their fourth line to eliminate the Sharks. Dave Satriano has five reasons why they advanced. 

-- Who will win the Cup Final? NHL.com experts weigh in withtheir predictions.

-- It was a magical night in St. Louis, and not just for the Blues players, writes Nicholas J. Cotsonika.

-- The Sharks' dream of winning the Stanley Cup fell short again, in painful fashion, writes Tracey Myers.

-- The Blues followed the lead of the Bruins and did not touch their conference final trophy, writes David Satriano. 

-- Sharks forward Joe Thornton would not discuss his future following San Jose's elimination, writes Shawn P. Roarke. 

-- Blues defenseman Jay Bouwmeester has waited a long time to reach the Stanley Cup Final, writes Louie Korac.

-- Blues fans flocked to the bar in Philadelphia where the whole "Gloria" craze began. Adam Kimelman was there. 

-- Here is an early look at the Stanley Cup Final between the Blues and Bruins.

-- The Stanley Cup Final will start in Boston on Monday. Here is the complete schedule

-- The Bruins, who haven't played since May 16, will hold an intrasquad scrimmage Thursday to stay sharp ahead of the Cup Final, writes Amalie Benjamin.

 

What we learned

Here are some takeaways from Game 6 of the Western Conference Final:

 

Sharks felled by injuries

The Sharks hesitated to use it as an excuse, but missing injured defenseman Erik Karlsson and forwards Joe Pavelski and Tomas Hertl in Game 6 was a huge loss. Those three combined for 40 points in 51 playoff games. Hertl and Karlsson were part of the Sharks' penalty kill, which gave up two goals on as many power plays for the Blues on Tuesday. As much as the effort was there for the Sharks, it's tough to overcome that kind of loss in an elimination game.

 

Sharks can't muster enough offense

The Sharks were productive early in the conference final with 13 goals in their first three games. But then they went quiet, scoring two goals in the final three. Hertl scored at 6:48 of the third period of a 2-1 loss in Game 4 and forward Dylan Gambrell, playing at second-line center in place of Pavelski, at 6:40 of the second in Game 6. Sure, the aforementioned injuries to Pavelski, Hertl and Erik Karlsson didn't help the Sharks, but the offense was drying up when they were still in the lineup.

Video: The Blues are headed to the Stanley Cup Final

 

Power play comes through for Blues

It took a little time, but the Blues got their power play going against the Sharks, going 2-for-2 in Game 6. Forward Vladimir Tarasenko's goal seven seconds into their first power play gave them a 2-0 lead at 16:16 of the first period. Forward Brayden Schenn's goal with 10 seconds remaining on the second power play made it 3-1 at 12:47 of the second. The Blues scored at least one power-play goal in each of the final four games of the conference final (5-for-15).

 

Binnington outstanding again for Blues

Goalie Jordan Binnington had another great night, making 25 saves. He was at his best in the third period, when the Sharks had the first 10 shots on goal. Binnington, a finalist for the Calder Trophy given to the best rookie in the NHL, has remained unflappable in the playoffs, and he's a big reason why the Blues are making their first Stanley Cup Final appearance since 1970.

Video: Jordan Binnington is beyond excited after Game 6

 

Quick links

-- It was a magical night in St. Louis, and not just for the Blues players, writes Nicholas J. Cotsonika.

-- The Sharks' dream of winning the Stanley Cup fell short again, in painful fashion, writes Tracey Myers.

-- The Blues followed the lead of the Bruins and did not touch their conference final trophy, writes David Satriano. 

-- Sharks forward Joe Thornton would not discuss his future following San Jose's elimination, writes Shawn P. Roarke. 

-- Blues defenseman Jay Bouwmeester has waited a long time to reach the Stanley Cup Final, writes Louie Korac.

-- Blues fans flocked to the bar in Philadelphia where the whole "Gloria" craze began. Adam Kimelman was there. 

-- Here is an early look at the Stanley Cup Final between the Blues and Bruins.

-- The Stanley Cup Final will start in Boston on Monday. Here is the complete schedule

-- The Bruins, who haven't played since May 16, will hold an intrasquad scrimmage Thursday to stay sharp ahead of the Cup Final, writes Amalie Benjamin.

 

Listen: Stanley Cup Final preview from NHL Fantasy on Ice podcast

View More

The NHL uses cookies, web beacons, and other similar technologies. By using NHL websites or other online services, you consent to the practices described in our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service, including our Cookie Policy.