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Jeff Gordon: Blues keep searching for defensive steadiness, offensive aggression

Jeff Gordon, St. Louis Post-Dispatch on

Published in Hockey

The Blues weren't terrible Monday night. But they weren't great either, so they remain stuck in a holding pattern.

"The chances were there, they just weren't going in, but I thought we played a pretty good game," forward Josh Leivo said after the 4-1 loss to Dallas.

"I thought we played a pretty smart first period," coach Craig Berube said. "Second period, I thought we were good, third period, not as good."

So it goes for the Blues, who are just sort of muddling through this season. Their record says it all: 11-11-0.

They did not suffer a total collapse after losing a club-record eight straight games in regulation time. Nor did they morph back into Stanley Cup-contending form after winning seven consecutive games.

They suffered ugly losses in Buffalo (6-2) and Tampa (5-2). They seemed doomed to a lopsided defeat in South Florida to the Panthers, too, after falling behind 4-1 in the second period.

 

They were running on fumes while playing their seventh game in 11 days. Then, miraculously, the Blues found their second wind and rallied for a 5-4 overtime victory.

That created another potential turning point in their streaky season, if the Blues could build off of that comeback with a strong performance against the Stars on Monday.

But they couldn't.

So they remain stuck back in the Western Conference pack, still in the playoff chase but making only intermittent progress.

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