The NHL Western Conference finals started last night with San Jose Sharks beating the St. Louis Blues with 6-3.
The fans at the Shark Tank could see a very good performance of the hosts, who controlled the match from the start until the very end. Even when Blues had the initiative in the last period, it was only because Peter DeBoer chose to wait for counter-attacks.
Logan Couture and Timo Meier had their night, as they terrorized the guests from Saint Louis.
Both of these guys scored two goals apiece and posted one assist, stepping up at best possible time for the Sharks. Their influence on the game was superb, as they kept pressuring the Blues’ defensemen throughout the entire match.
Also, not to forget Gustav Nyquist who had two assists, making this trio very productive.
When talking about stepping up, Timo Meier had his two goals in the moments when the game was on the line. It was the late part of the second period, and the Blues were still around, now wanting to give up.
It was obvious that whoever prevails in that sequence will have a huge swing entering the third, and possibly crack the other side.
Ryan O’Reilly has just scored to decrease Sharks’ lead to 3-2 at 8:58. After that Meier showed up, scored two goals until the end of the second, and pulled away his team to a safe 5-2 lead.
“He was a bull,” Logan Couture said for his teammate form the line. “When he skates and with his strength, he’s tough to defend.”
These two guys are working together very well. Meier’s first goal came after Couture forced Colton Parayko to lose the puck, which ended in right winger’s possession. After that Jordan Binnington had no chance of saving his goal. His second hit included a lot of luck. Meier sent a shot towards Blues’ net, but along the way puck deflected off Vincent Dunn and changed the trajectory for a little bit.
— x – San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks) May 12, 2019
Again, there was no chance for Binnington who was left on his own throughout the majority of the night.
Meanwhile, Couture opened and closed the last night’s contest at the SAP Center. The 30-year old center was the first and last to score, putting a stamp on this match.
Couture scored 11 goals in 15 playoff matches, adding 6 assists to that for a total of 17 points. He’s been a critical part of this team, and the guys who often decide matches.
Right now, Couture is one of six active players to have two postseasons with 10 or more goals.
On the other side of the ice, things weren’t as Blues planned, especially in the back. The guests gave away too many pucks, made several mistakes, and when you do that against a team like Sharks, the loss is almost guaranteed. An aggressive and physical style of play San Jose had last night caught Berube’s crew off guard.
That is what Joel Edmundson said during the interview after the event.
“There were a few too many mistakes out there. Whenever there was, they capitalized on every chance they got.”
The Blues did create pressure in the final period, but that was when home team had a 3-goal lead.
At the moment, the Sharks have three consecutive wins over the Blues at SAP Center. This one and two in the regular part of the season. The first was 4-0 back in November, when St. Louis sat at the bottom of the league. More recent one after overtime, 3-2 on the 9th of March. The last time guests won at Shark Tank was way back in early 2017.
Game 2 is on this Monday at 8 p.m. local time.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write, read, and bet on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a betting tips writer at WagerBop.