-Photo by Ryan Leopando / Arch City Sports
After losing four straight games including a 5-0 loss to Colorado two days before Christmas, the Blues got back on track with a 2-0 win against the Avs.
In the first period, the Blues looked to get ahead right away as they had a few chances early on. Just over one minute into the game, Alexander Steen gave a backhand pass behind him to T.J. Oshie who took a slap shot on net. Semyon Varlomov sticked the puck right in front of the net, but David Backes was unable to corral the rebound. Oshie had another opportunity with a slap shot from the top of the circle that was gloved down by Varlomov just four minutes later.
Despite the two early shots by Oshie, the Blues amassed just five shots in the first period being outshot 8-5.
The second period was a different story for the Blues as they found an unlikely hero just 26 seconds in. The former Avalanche member Paul Stastny blocked off a clearing attempt by Varlomov leading to a puck battle in the corner. The puck bounced out towards the front of the net where Dimitrij Jaskin beat Varlomov for his third goal of the season. After being held pointless in five straight games, the former Blues second round pick now has four points in his last five games.
St. Louis was not done yet. Just under four minutes later, Jaskin set up an offensive cycle down low after a backhand shot on net. Oshie gathered the puck along the end boards before dropping it off to Chris Butler as he drove in on net and deked out Varlomov to put St. Louis ahead 2-0 with 15:30 left in the second period.
After being outshot 8-5 in the first period, St. Louis stormed back in the second outshooting the Avs 11-3 including three shots by Jaskin.
In the third period, the Blues continued to put pressure on the Avs. Midway through the third period, Nathan MacKinnon sent a cross-ice pass in the middle of the Colorado defensive zone. The pass was picked off by Vladamir Tarasenko who ripped it past the glove of Varlamov for his career high 22nd goal of the season. The goal made it 3-0 as that would prove to be enough for Martin Brodeur and the Blues.
Although Brodeur faced just 16 shots on goal, he was sharp all night long. The shutout was Brodeur’s first as a member of the St. Louis Blues and his 125th career shutout, which is first all-time in the NHL. The victory is also number 691 for the 42-year-old as Brodeur chases win number 700.
Former Avalanche forward Paul Stastny put up two assists against for his first two points against his former team.
With the win, the Blues are now 22-11-3 with 47 points. St. Louis remains third in the Central Division as Nashville and Chicago faced off for the division lead.
St. Louis will be on the road for its next matchup against the Nashville Predators Tuesday December 30th at 7:00 p.m. CT.