Posted October 26, 2011 on
AP on Fox
The St. Louis Blues are getting results, but it's coming with an unexpected change in goal.
The Vancouver Canucks are dealing with their own surprising play by goaltender Roberto Luongo.
Brian Elliott may get the start over Jaroslav Halak again as the Blues begin the Western Canada portion of their trip against the Canucks on Wednesday night.
St. Louis (4-4-0) followed Friday's 3-2 overtime win against Carolina by beating Philadelphia 4-2 the next night after arriving at 3 a.m. local time and canceling its morning skate.
"We're playing the team game that we drew up at the beginning of the year," defenseman Barret Jackman said. "We kept it simple and got back to the basics."
A change in net is also providing a spark.
Elliott is 3-0-0 with a 2.06 goals-against average in four games, winning each of the last two while yielding four goals on 65 shots to make a case for increased playing time.
Halak, St. Louis' unquestioned No. 1 netminder last season, hasn't been used since being pulled 23 seconds into the third period of a 5-0 defeat at Los Angeles on Oct. 18. He gave up four goals on 18 shots before being replaced by Elliott, a free-agent signing from Colorado last summer.
"Internal competition drives a hockey team to be better every day and this is no different," coach Davis Payne said.
Elliott has lost three of four meetings with the Canucks (4-4-1) behind a 2.80 GAA, while Halak has a 1.81 GAA while winning four of his last five starts against them.
Matt D'Agostini leads the Blues with four goals, finding the net in each of the last two contests, including the winner against the Hurricanes last week. The right wing has just one goal and one assist in eight games against Vancouver.
While Elliott is giving St. Louis some steady goaltending, Luongo is under increased scrutiny due to his 2-3-1 record and 3.46 GAA. He turned in yet another rough performance in Tuesday's 3-2 loss at Edmonton, allowing three goals in the opening 6:55 of the second period and getting the hook in favor of backup Cory Schneider.
The four-time All-Star broke his stick against the boards upon his exit.
"It was a frustrating night for me," Luongo said. "I felt I was moving well and seeing the puck well in the first period and then in a five-minute span they got three quick ones and that was all she wrote."
It's unclear if Luongo will remain on the bench, but he's 7-2-0 with a 1.88 GAA and one shutout in his last nine home starts against the Blues.
Schneider, who made all eight saves the rest of the way Tuesday, has a 1.68 GAA in four games while winning two of his three starts. He won his only meeting against St. Louis on Feb. 24, making 28 saves in a 3-2 victory in Vancouver.
Henrik Sedin has eight assists and 11 points through nine games, one fewer point than twin brother Daniel Sedin's team-leading total.
The Canucks and Blues split four meetings last season, including two at Rogers Arena.
BEST OF MAXIM
Have you heard? Roberto Luongo is not off to a good start. With some Canucks fans calling for his head (or at least his starting job) we're using this week's Fantasy Hockey Faceoff to examine Luongo from a poolie's perspective and try to figure out whether he'll turn things around.
It's been a fairly underreported story, but apparently Vancouver Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo was replaced in Tuesday night's loss to the Edmonton Oilers by backup Cory Schneider and apparently Schneider will make a scheduled start against the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday night with Luongo on the bench.
(Which means he'll probably pitch a shutout, and give his coach...
Alexander Steen scored twice and goaltender Brian Elliott made 32 saves to help the St. Louis Blues beat the Vancouver Canucks 3-0 on Wednesday night. Elliott, who signed a free-agent contract as a backup with St. Louis this summer, improved his record to 4-0-0. It was his first shutout of the season and 10th of his career.
Given all the fuss about goaltending around these parts, Bodog is glad to make some money off the argument. Here are their odds on what has apparently become the Annual October Debate in this province:
Who will start more games in the month of November 2011?
Roberto Luongo (VAN) -500
Cory Schneider (VAN) +300
Who will have more wins during...
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) Alexander Steen scored twice and goaltender Brian Elliott made 32 saves to help the St. Louis
Blues beat the Vancouver Canucks 3-0 on Wednesday night.
Alexander Steen scored twice and goaltender Brian Elliott made 32 saves to help the St. Louis Blues beat the Vancouver Canucks 3-0 on Wednesday night.
Elliott, who signed a free-agent contract as a backup with St. Louis this summer, improved his record to 4-0-0. It was his first shutout of the season and 10th of his career.
The victory improved the Blues' record to 5-4-0. St...
If the Blues had a plan to start Jaroslav Halak in goal tonight
against Calgary, will Brian Elliott's 32-save shutout in
Wednesday's win over Vancouver alter that plan?
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) -- After living through some bad times goaltender Brian Elliott is enjoying the roll the St. Louis Blues are on.
Elliott stopped 32 shots and Alexander Steen scored two goals as the Blues extended their winning streak to three games with a 3-0 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Wednesday night.
"Sometimes you can get on a roll like that...
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Alexander Steen scored twice and goaltender Brian Elliott made 32 saves to help the St. Louis Blues beat the Vancouver Canucks 3-0 on Wednesday.