ST. LOUIS The question was common this week, and goalie Jaroslav Halak turned to the crowd after practice to explain how the St. Louis Blues have faith in their chance to advance despite playoff inexperience.
The past doesnt matter, he said without emotion to the cameras and microphones nearby. Hockey can be an unforgiving game, but it rewards teams that stay true to an approach that made them excel.
Such was the Blues reality in the days before their Western Conference quarterfinals series against the San Jose Sharks begins tonight at the Scottrade Center. St. Louis earned its first playoff berth since 2009. Meanwhile, San Jose has played in the postseason 12 of the past 13 years.
The inquiries came fast in the Blues locker room at St. Louis Mills, each framed in various ways but all similar: How will St. Louis respond against a tested postseason opponent? How will the Blues react knowing few on coach Ken Hitchcocks bench have lived a deep playoffs run?
Right now is right ...