2013–14 St. Louis Blues season

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2013–14 St. Louis Blues
Division 2nd Central
Conference 3rd Western
2013–14 record 52–23–7
Home record 28–9–4
Road record 24–14–3
Goals for 248
Goals against 191
Team information
General Manager Doug Armstrong
Coach Ken Hitchcock
Captain David Backes
Alternate captains Barret Jackman
T. J. Oshie
Alex Pietrangelo
Alexander Steen
Arena Scottrade Center
Average attendance 17,025 (88.9%)[1]
41 games (19,150 max.)
Minor league affiliate(s) Chicago Wolves (AHL)
Kalamazoo Wings (ECHL)
St. Charles Chill (CHL)
Team leaders
Goals Alexander Steen (33)
Assists Alex Pietrangelo (43)
Points Alexander Steen (62)
Penalties in minutes Ryan Reaves (126)
Plus/minus Jaden Schwartz (+28)
Wins Jaroslav Halak (24)
Goals against average Brian Elliott (1.96)

The 2013–14 St. Louis Blues season was the 47th season for the National Hockey League franchise that was established on June 5, 1967. They were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs by the Chicago Blackhawks, four games to two.

Regular season[edit]

October[edit]

Jaroslav Halak became the Blues' leader in shutouts with his 17th on October 5, with a 7–0 victory over the Florida Panthers at the Scottrade Center, surpassing Glenn Hall's 16.[2] Hall's record took 140 games (1968–1971), while Halak's took him only 121 games since he joined the Blues in June 2010.[3]

The Blues have opened the season with a 4–0 start on October 12 with a home win against the New York Rangers, the first time they have started that perfectly in their 47-year history. The game was also their 10th consecutive home win dating back to last season.[4]

November[edit]

Alexander Steen was named the First Star of the Month for October on November 1, having the best start of his NHL career. He scored 11 goals, including four power-play goals, and sat fourth in the NHL with 16 points in the team's 10 games played for the month.[5]

The Blues' telecasts earned the highest ratings in October in the team's 18 seasons on Fox Sports Midwest, with a 3.5 rating, 94% higher than in October 2011 (1.8), and 13% higher than the team's previous October best, a 3.1 in 1997. The Blues were 7–1–1 in October.[6]

Steen scored his NHL-leading 14th goal on November 7 against the Calgary Flames, the game-winner. Alexander Ovechkin and Steven Stamkos had tied him with their 13th earlier in the evening. He is the first Blues' player to score 14 goals in the team's first 14 games since the 1991 season, when Brett Hull scored 16. Maxim Lapierre scored his first goal as a Blue and goaltender Brian Elliott earned his 100th career win in stopping 18 shots out of 20. Jordan Leopold got his first two points of the season (both assists), while Kevin Shattenkirk got an assist on the Blues' second goal, giving him at least one in his seventh consecutive game, the longest in the NHL this season. He has eight in that span.[7]

On November 16, Steen scored his NHL-leading 17th goal, the game-winner with 6:20 into the third period, and earlier added an assist to pass Sidney Crosby for the points lead at 26, in a 4–2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes. Steen also extended his NHL-best points streak to 13 games, totaling 13 goals and five assists in that stretch. Blues' Head Coach Ken Hitchcock also won his 618th game, passing Jacques Lemaire for ninth place on the all-time list.[8] Steen's consecutive game streak of at least one point ended at 13, in the next game on Nov. 17.

On November 23, Coach Hitchcock got his 621st win, passing Bryan Murray for eighth place on the all-time list.[9]

On November 25, Jaroslav Halak got his 27th career shutout, a franchise-record 18th as a member of the Blues and his second this season.[10]

On November 27, Steen scored his 20th goal, tying Alexander Ovechkin for the NHL lead, in the Blues' fifth consecutive win. The Blues were 10–1–1 in their past 12 games for a 19–3–3 record and 41 points.[11]

December[edit]

Alexander Steen scored his 23rd and 24th goals in a 5–1 win on December 19, after earlier in the day signing a 3-year, $17.4 million contract extension that will keep him as a Blue through to the 2016–17 season. His 24 goals, tying his career-high after only 34 team games (23–7–4), were second in the NHL only to the 28 scored by Alexander Ovechkin. Brenden Morrow earned his 300th career assist. The team is 48–0–1 in the past 49 home games when scoring three goals or more.[12] Steen, the second-highest goal scorer in the NHL with 24, was sidelined with an upper-body injury during the second period of the December 21 game against the Edmonton Oilers.[13] He was placed on injured reserve with a concussion on December 28, and will be out indefinitely. He last played on December 21, leaving in the second period. He leads the Blues with 24 goals (second in the NHL) and 38 points.[14]

Chris Stewart was named First Star of the Week on December 23, for his performance in the week ending December 22, after earning six goals and one assist. He beat Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh) and Matt Duchene (Colorado).[15]

On December 23, the Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper attended the Blues' game in Calgary against the Flames.[16]

On December 28, the Blues beat the Chicago Blackhawks in a thrilling 6–5 shootout at Scottrade to gain a point on the Blackhawks, and now within six points of division-leading Chicago, but with four games fewer played. The Blues were twice down by two goals, but came back to tie in regulation and then through a scoreless overtime. The Blues have beaten Chicago all three games played with two coming in shootouts, with this game playing without their top scorer, Alexander Steen. Dmitrij Jaskin scored his first NHL goal.[17]

January[edit]

Three Blues' players were named to the 2014 Winter Olympics, men's USA Olympic team in Sochi, Russia, (February 7–23). David Backes,29, T. J. Oshie,27, and Kevin Shattenkirk (to be 25 then), were named to the team after the 2014 Winter Classic game on January 1. Backes (Minneapolis, Minnesota) was named to the USA Olympic team for the second time, Oshie (Everett, Washington), and Shattenkirk (New Rochelle, New York) for the first.[18]

Vladimir Sobotka,26, was named to the Czech Republic's men's Olympic team,[19] but a leg injury on January 31 will prevent him from participating in the Olympics. He will be re-evaluated in four weeks.[20]

The Blues have their best start in the first half of the season (41 games) in team history after the January 4 game, with a 29–7–5 record and 63 points.[21]

Goalie Brian Elliott was named the NHL's Second Star of the Week on January 6 for the week ending Jan. 5, after posting a glittering 3–0–0 record with a 1.00 GAA and a 0.962 save percentage, including one shutout, his career 24th, 15th with the Blues. That is one shy of Glenn Hall for #2 in team history. He came within eight seconds of a second shutout against the Minnesota Wild on New Year's Eve.[21]

Jay Bouwmeester,30, and Alex Pietrangelo (to be 24 then), both defensemen, will represent Canada on the men's Olympic team.[22]

Vladimir Tarasenko will represent Russia on the men's Olympic team. He is a native of Yaroslavl.[23]

Jaroslav Halak will represent Slovakia on the men's Olympic team.[24]

The Blues are back on top of the TSN Power Rankings on January 13, and have a +1.34 per game goal differential.[25]

Alexander Steen returned to a full practice with the Blues on January 13, still out with a concussion, but making progress but there is no definite plan for his return. He has led the Blues in goals (24) and scoring (38 points) since his December 21 injury. His 38 points are fifth in the NHL. This is his second time with a concussion, when he lost 39 games during the 2011–12 season. The Blues were able to play at a 7–1–1 pace in his nine missed games, through January 10.[26] His 38 points led the Blues until T. J. Oshie scored twice in the January 14th game, giving Oshie 39 points with a team-leading 29 assists to go with 10 goals, but playing in 45 games to Steen's 35 games. He was activated on January 17, after missing 11 games since his concussion on December 21. He is fifth-ranked in goals with 24. Named to Sweden's men's Olympic team, as was teammate Patrik Berglund.[27] They were selected on January 7. Steen, 29, representing Sweden for the fourth time overall, first time at the Olympics. Berglund, 25, for the fifth time overall, first time at the Olympics.[28] Altogether, 10 Blues' players have been selected to five countries' Olympic teams.

February[edit]

On February 6, coach Ken Hitchcock won his 110th game with the Blues, tying him for fourth place with Scotty Bowman on the Blues' list. With the OT win, the Blues moved within two points of Chicago for first place in the Central Division, and three points of the NHL-leading Anaheim Ducks.[29]

On February 15, at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, T. J. Oshie scored four shootout goals in six attempts (in a preliminary round only for seeding purposes), including the game-winner in a thrilling 3–2 win for the U.S. over Russia in front of 11,678 screaming fans[30] at the Bolshoy Ice Dome.[31][32][33] Video.[34] Oshie was a player on the "bubble" whether the U.S. team would add him to its roster or not, but took him because of his success rate in shootouts.[35] At the time of the Olympic break after the February 8 game, Oshie was tied for the team lead in points (46, 14 goals and 32 assists in 57G) with team goal-scoring leader Alexander Steen (28 goals and 18 assists in 46G).

On February 28, the Blues traded Jaroslav Halak and Chris Stewart, along with minor leaguer William Carrier and a first-round pick in 2015 and third-round pick in 2016, in exchange for goaltender Ryan Miller and forward Steve Ott of the Buffalo Sabres.[36] Miller and Ott will join the Blues on Sunday for their road game against the Phoenix Coyotes.[37]

March[edit]

The Blues took over the top spot in the NHL after their March 9 win with 94 points, and became the first team to pass the 100-point level (47–14–7), for the sixth time in their history after beating the Winnipeg Jets on March 17. On March 16, the team lost forward Vladimir Tarasenko because of a hand injury from the previous game on March 15, and will be reevaluated in six weeks.[38] T. J. Oshie missed his first game of the year, the wild St. Patrick's Day game with numerous fights, to see the birth of his daughter earlier in the day. The Blues are four points ahead of their closest competitors, the Boston Bruins, Anaheim Ducks, and San Jose Sharks for the Presidents' Trophy with 14 games to play.[39]

On March 22, the Blues clinched a playoff spot for the third consecutive season and 38th in franchise history, after the Phoenix Coyotes lost after the Blues lost to the Philadelphia Flyers. The Blues lead the Western Conference with 101 points (47–16–7) with 12 games remaining.[40]

With his 16th career shutout for the Blues and 25th career shutout on March 24, Brian Elliott tied Glenn Hall for second place. He accomplished his 25th shutout in only his 209th start. It was the fifth fastest to 25 shutouts in modern NHL history. After 28 games, Elliott has a 17–5–2 record, 1.97 GAA, a .921 save percentage and fourth shutout this year. Jaroslav Halak holds the Blues' record with 20 shutouts.[41]

T. J. Oshie was named the NHL's Third Star of the Week on March 31, for the week ending March 30. He tied for second place with six points in three games, including his first career hat trick on March 27.[42]

April[edit]

The Blues set a new team wins record with their 52nd on April 3, breaking the record held by the 1999–2000 Blues team that had 51 wins, 114 points, and won the Presidents' Trophy that season. They were in a strong position for the trophy with 111 points (52–17–7), over Boston by losing one less game then the Bruins, with six games remaining.[43]

On April 4, Alexander Steen was nominated by the St. Louis chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy. The trophy is awarded annually to the player "who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey." Steen leads the Blues with 33 goals, and tied for the team lead with 60 points despite losing 11 games from a concussion in December.[44]

The Blues Central Division lead evaporated after their fourth consecutive loss on April 10, while the Colorado Avalanche won, tying the Blues with 111 points, but having the season's head-to-head advantage over the Blues.

T. J. Oshie was hit high by the Wild's Michael Rupp on April 10, in the middle of the second period. Rupp was immediately given a 10-minute match penalty, and subsequently a four-game suspension without pay, from the NHL Department of Player Safety for the illegal hit to the head. The suspension covers the last regular season game and three playoff games. Rupp will forfeit $7,692 for those four games.[45] Oshie has 21 goals, and is second on the team with 60 points.[46]

Just before the regular season comes to an end, the Blues are battling several key injuries which contributed to their season-high five-game losing streak headed into the final game on April 13. T. J. Oshie, David Backes, Vladimir Sobotka, Derek Roy, Brenden Morrow, and long-injured Vladimir Tarasenko won't be available for the final game. Patrik Berglund got hurt in the final period of the April 12 game. The playoffs start on April 17.[47]

Of the eight players sidelined by injury who couldn't play in the last regular season game on April 13, six will return for the first game of the first playoff round, against Chicago on April 17. One of the six is Vladimir Tarasenko, who suffered a broken hand on March 15 with surgery on March 19, and was not expected to be evaluated until after the end of the first round.[48] Only T. J. Oshie and Patrik Berglund won't be ready.[49]

Fox Sports Midwest had a record broadcast season covering the team. The Blues were seen in 4% of homes in the St. Louis area market who had a television. The previous record was last year (2012–13 season) with a 3.9 rating. The Blues' rating ranked fifth among U.S.-based NHL teams.[50]

May[edit]

Coach Ken Hitchcock, 62, was extended through the 2014–15 St. Louis Blues season on May 7, as were Associate Coach Brad Shaw and Assistant Coach Ray Bennett. The club announced that Assistant Coach Gary Agnew, and Goaltending Coach Corey Hirsch will not be retained. Hitchcock is the 24th head coach of the Blues, starting on Nov. 7, 2011. He has a 124-55-20 (.673) record in his three years, which is the record for a Blues' coach. He is an Edmonton, Alberta native, who has a 657-405-78 (.602) lifetime NHL coaching mark.[51] On May 13, 2014, the Blues announced they had hired, former Carolina Hurricanes head coach, Kirk Muller as an assistant coach to Hitchcock.[52]

Standings[edit]

Divisional standings[edit]

Central Division[53]
GP W L OTL ROW GF GA Pts
1 y - Colorado Avalanche 82 52 22 8 47 250 220 112
2 St. Louis Blues 82 52 23 7 43 248 191 111
3 Chicago Blackhawks 82 46 21 15 40 267 220 107
4 Minnesota Wild 82 43 27 12 35 207 206 98
5 Dallas Stars 82 40 31 11 36 235 228 91
6 Nashville Predators 82 38 32 12 36 216 242 88
7 Winnipeg Jets 82 37 35 10 29 227 237 84


Conference standings[edit]

Top 3 (Central Division)[54]
R GP W L OTL ROW GF GA Pts
1 y – Colorado Avalanche 82 52 22 8 47 250 220 112
2 St. Louis Blues 82 52 23 7 43 248 191 111
3 Chicago Blackhawks 82 46 21 15 40 267 220 107
Top 3 (Pacific Division)[54]
R GP W L OTL ROW GF GA Pts
1 z – Anaheim Ducks 82 54 20 8 51 266 209 116
2 San Jose Sharks 82 51 22 9 41 249 200 111
3 Los Angeles Kings 82 46 28 8 38 206 174 100
Wild Card Teams[54]
R (Top 2 qualify for playoffs) Div GP W L OTL ROW GF GA Pts
1 Minnesota Wild CE 82 43 27 12 35 207 206 98
2 Dallas Stars CE 82 40 31 11 36 235 228 91
3 Phoenix Coyotes PA 82 37 30 15 31 216 231 89
4 Nashville Predators CE 82 38 32 12 36 216 242 88
5 Winnipeg Jets CE 82 37 35 10 29 227 237 84
6 Vancouver Canucks PA 82 36 35 11 31 196 223 83
7 Calgary Flames PA 82 35 40 7 28 209 241 77
8 Edmonton Oilers PA 82 29 44 9 25 203 270 67

bold – Clinched Playoff spot, y – Clinched Division, z – Clinched Conference

Divisions: CE – Central, PA – Pacific


Schedule and results[edit]

Pre-season[edit]

Legend:   Win   Loss   Overtime/shootout loss

Regular season[edit]

Legend:   Win   Loss   Overtime/shootout loss

2013–14 Game Log

Legend:   Win (2 points)   Loss (0 points)   Overtime/shootout loss (1 point)

Playoffs[edit]

The St. Louis Blues entered the playoffs as the Central Division's second seed. They faced the Chicago Blackhawks in the first round.
(Round 1 Schedule, Schedule, incl. networks/tickets)

The longest game in franchise history ended at 0:26 into the third overtime of Game 1 on April 17, with Alexander Steen scoring the game-winning goal to win 4–3 ending the 100 min. 26 sec. marathon. Jaden Schwartz scored with 1:45 remaining in the third period to tie it at 3–3. A highlight was forward Maxim Lapierre after inadvertently getting shoved into the goal crease, and then making a save on a shot that sailed past Ryan Miller in the first overtime.[55] The team ended its scoring draught after 148 min. 39 sec. with Adam Cracknell's first-ever playoff goal at 4:40 into the first period.[56] Jaden Schwartz and Vladimir Tarasenko also scored their first playoff goals. The home record for a playoff overtime game for the Blues had been 33:49 of extra time in a 5–4 win over Chicago on April 20, 1989. Jay Bouwmeester has the longest consecutive-games streak in major sports at 717 games left in the first overtime and could not return due to dehydration.[57] The Blues had 52 shots on goal to Chicago's 42. The previous longest game was April 7, 1984, with the Blues winning 4–3 over Detroit at 17:07 into the second overtime.[58]

Patrik Berglund will return for Game 3 (April 21) after suffering an upper-body injury on April 11 against Dallas.[59] David Backes won't be able to return after a vicious, illegal hit to the head in Game 2 (April 19) at 15:09 mark in the third period. The instigator on Chicago's team was given a 5-min charging major, instead of a hit-to-the-head major penalty, also given a Game Misconduct, and subsequently suspended for three games by the NHL's Department of Player Safety. Another member of Chicago's team was accused of cruelly taunting the injured Backes with a "Wakey, wakey, Backes" chant. The Blues say they know what was said and it was not appreciated.[60] The Blues lead the series 2–0 after the April 19 game win 4–3, 5:50 into the first overtime, from a goal by Barret Jackman. Brendan Morrow also will return who played in Game 1, but got scratched for Game 2 from a foot injury sustained on April 10 before that game.[61]

Game 3 on April 21 garnerned the highest ratings ever for Fox Sports Midwest in broadcasting a Blues' game with a 11.9 household rating in the St. Louis market. The previous high was 11.0 on April 16, 2012 in the Blues' first-round win at San Jose. The Blues-Blackhawks game was the most-watched program that evening in St. Louis. Viewership peaked at the end of the game at a 14.7 rating/22 share/184,000 households. Game 1 on April 17 was the third-watched all-time with a 10.4 rating. The afternoon Game 2 on April 19 (KSDK) received a 11.2 rating.[62]

Brenden Morrow missed Game 4, and is out for the remainder of the first round series.[63]
Game 5 on April 25 is broadcast on NBC Sports instead of Fox Sports Midwest. Game 6 on Sunday, April 27, is broadcast on NBC, 2pm.

Vladimir Tarasenko, after four games (April 23) leads the NHL with four playoff goals. Kevin Shattenkirk has one goal and four assists for five points, tied for second among defensemen.[64]

The Blues got captain David Backes back for Game 5 at home (April 25),[65] playing in 21:35 on 34 shifts, and the team outhitting Chicago 54–17, but it was for naught as the team lost 3–2 in the fourth overtime game, with them missing the net numerous times in shots, and too frequently an open net. Through the five games, the team has missed the net a whopping 88 times on shots made, and had another 68 shots blocked by Chicago defenders.[66] Coach Ken Hitchcock changed lines on both offense and defense with Alexander Steen joining Vladimir Sobotka and Vladimir Tarasenko on a second line.[67]

Legend:   Win   Loss

2014 Stanley Cup playoffs

Legend:   Win   Loss

Player statistics[edit]

Skaters[edit]

Final stats[68]

Goaltenders[edit]

(through final regular season game on April 13, 2014)

Regular Season
Player GP GS TOI W L OT GA GAA SA SV% SO G A PIM
Elliott, BrianBrian Elliott 31 25 1,624 18 6 2   53 1.96    681 .922 4 0 2 0
Miller, RyanRyan Miller (acquired after 2/28) 19 19 1,117 10 8 1   46 2.47    474 .903 1 0 0 0
Halak, JaroslavJaroslav Halak (traded on 2/28) 40 38 2,238 24 9 4   83 2.23 1,002 .917 4 0 1 0
Totals 82 4,979 52 23 7 182 2.19 2,157 .916 9 0 3 0

Playoffs (through final game on April 27, 2014)

Playoffs
Player GP GS TOI W L GA GAA SA SV% SO G A PIM
Miller, RyanRyan Miller 6 6 422 2 4 19 2.70 185 .897 0 0 0 0

Roster[edit]

Updated April 27, 2014, end of season[69] (see 2014–15 St. Louis Blues season for updated roster).

# Nat Player Pos S/G Age Acquired Birthplace
15 United States Aucoin, KeithKeith Aucoin C L 35 2013 Waltham, Massachusetts
42 United States Backes, DavidDavid Backes (C) C R 29 2003 Minneapolis, Minnesota
21 Sweden Berglund, PatrikPatrik Berglund C L 25 2006 Västerås, Sweden
19 Canada Bouwmeester, JayJay Bouwmeester D L 30 2013 Edmonton, Alberta
28 United States Cole, IanIan Cole D L 25 2007 Ann Arbor, Michigan
13 Canada Colaiacovo, CarloCarlo Colaiacovo D L 31 2013 Toronto, Ontario
79 Canada Cracknell, AdamAdam Cracknell RW R 28 2009 Prince Albert, Saskatchewan
1 Canada Elliott, BrianBrian Elliott G L 29 2011 Newmarket, Ontario
5 Canada Jackman, BarretBarret Jackman (A) D L 33 1999 Trail, British Columbia
40 Canada Lapierre, MaximMaxim Lapierre C R 29 2013 Montreal, Quebec
33 United States Leopold, JordanJordan Leopold D L 33 2013 Golden Valley, Minnesota
37 Sweden Lundstrom, NiklasNiklas Lundstrom G L 21 2011 Varmdo, Sweden
39 United States Miller, RyanRyan Miller G L 33 2014 East Lansing, Michigan
10 Canada Morrow, BrendenBrenden Morrow LW L 35 2013 Carlyle, Saskatchewan
74 United States Oshie, T. J.T. J. Oshie (A) RW/C R 27 2005 Mount Vernon, Washington
29 Canada Ott, SteveSteve Ott C L 31 2014 Summerside, Prince Edward Island
56 Sweden Paajarvi, MagnusMagnus Paajarvi LW L 23 2013 Norrköping, Sweden
27 Canada Pietrangelo, AlexAlex Pietrangelo (A) D R 24 2008 King City, Ontario
46 Czechoslovakia Polak, RomanRoman Polak D R 27 2004 Ostrava, Czech republic
32 Canada Porter, ChrisChris Porter C L 29 2007 Toronto, Ontario
75 Canada Reaves, RyanRyan Reaves RW R 27 2005 Winnipeg, Manitoba
12 Canada Roy, DerekDerek Roy C L 30 2013 Ottawa, Ontario
9 Canada Schwartz, JadenJaden Schwartz C L 21 2010 Melfort, Saskatchewan
22 United States Shattenkirk, KevinKevin Shattenkirk D R 25 2011 Greenwich, Connecticut
17 Czech Republic Sobotka, VladimirVladimir Sobotka LW/C L 26 2010 Třebíč, Czech republic
20 Sweden Steen, AlexanderAlexander Steen (A) LW L 30 2008 Winnipeg, Manitoba
91 Russia Tarasenko, VladimirVladimir Tarasenko RW L 22 2010 Yaroslavl, Soviet Union

Milestones[edit]

Regular Season
Player Milestone Reached
Maxim Lapierre [7] 1st StL Blues Goal November 7, 2013
Brian Elliott [7] 100th Career Win November 7, 2013
Brenden Morrow [12] 300th Career Assist December 19, 2013
Dmitrij Jaskin [17] 1st NHL Goal December 28, 2013
Ty Rattie [70] 1st NHL Game April 11, 2014
Adam Cracknell, Jaden Schwartz, Vladimir Tarasenko [57] 1st NHL playoff Goal April 17, 2014

Awards[edit]

Regular Season
Player Award Awarded
Alexander Steen [5] NHL First Star of the Month (Oct.) November 1, 2013
Chris Stewart [15] NHL First Star of the Week (ending Dec. 22) December 23, 2013
Brian Elliott [21] NHL Second Star of the Week (ending Jan. 5) January 6, 2014
T.J. Oshie [42] NHL Third Star of the Week (ending Mar. 30) March 31, 2014
Jake Allen [71] AHL's Baz Bastien Memorial Award Outstanding Goaltender, 2013–14 April 17, 2014

Transactions[edit]

The Blues have been involved in the following transactions during the 2013–14 season