St. Louis Blues (4-1-0) at Chicago Blackhawks (4-1-1)
|Date & Time||Thursday October 17, 2013, 8:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Chicago Blackhawks -147 / St. Louis Blues +134 --- Over/Under: 5.5
Two of the best in the West square off in Chicago as the Blues look to rebound after their first loss of the year while the Hawks look for retribution after dropping the last meeting in St. Louis.
The Blues are a very fine example of how good a team can become when they find a perfect of veteran experience, young talent, great coaching, and solid netminding and while they have been knocking on the door for years it appears as though this is the season that it’s make or break. St. Louis stormed out of the gates but were knocked back a bit in their last contest against the seemingly unbeatable San Jose Sharks and now they have to head to the United Centre in an attempt to sweep the first two contetss against a very strong Blackhawks team. Jaroslav Halak has been brilliant for the Blues in the crease and he will likely get the nod once again as the Hawks counter with Corey Crawford.
Chicago has won three games in a row and haven’t dropped a regulation contest with the exception of their loss in St. Louis which they will be looking to redeem at home in this one. Chicago is coming off a Stanley Cup title and while we haven’t seen repeat champions since the 1997-98 Detroit Red Wings this Hawks team could be the one to lift that curse and repeat as the best in the world. Chicago did lose some key role players but they retained the majority of their core from the last two Stanley Cup titles and against a Blues team that is very well balanced, a winning atmosphere and culture can make a huge difference. While the line leans a little heavy towards the Hawks for my liking and with the value lying with the Blues this is a tough call to make but ultimately I don’t see St. Louis taking the first two games against Chicago and I like them to bounce back here.