Gotta hand it to the St Louis Blues, they took it to the Dallas Stars on Sunday afternoon at American Airlines Center. You could tell they were the team playing for their Playoff lives. As a Dallas Stars fan you would have liked to see that same desperation and effort from the team with the potential to close out the Series on home ice, but it wasn't meant to be. The Blues executed a perfect road game that began 63 seconds in, when Captain Alex Pietrangelo scored, immediately taking momentum, and taking the crowd out of the game.
It would take the Stars 8 minutes to get their first shot on goal. Again, not optimal for a team looking to dictate. The good guys would get a Power Play midway through the first period and Tyler Seguin would pull the Stars even, courtesy of a great pass from Mats Zuccarello (which is becoming a redundancy).
The Stars could never get the go-ahead goal. Then, with 4:36 left in the second period the Blues could. Forward David Perron tipped the puck past Ben Bishop on a nice cross-ice pass from Oskar Sundqvist. 2-1 Blues. The goal was huge, as the team leading after two periods of play has won every game in this Series.
Then, the third period happened. A period full of concern for Dallas Stars fans. First, Colton Parayko's shot from the point looked like it caught Stars goalie Ben Bishop up high, in the collar bone, knocking him down. Rather than blow the whistle immediately, the refs allowed play to continue as the Blues maintained possession. The puck would end up on Jaden Schwartz stick and he put it in the yawning net. 3-1 Blues.
The play could be argued to death, but according to the rule of NHL law, the refs handled it correctly, the play continues. The Stars decided to keep Bishop in the game even though he was shaken up. Moments later Jamie Benn would cough up the puck sending the Blues in on a breakaway. Sam Blais, playing in his first career NHL Playoff game, made a smart decision to just blast one on Bishop. 4-1 Blues.
After playing a darn-near-perfect Game 5, Ben Bishop would be chased from Game 6 and Stars backup Anton Khudobin would make his first appearance of the 2019 post-season. Again, pretty much the perfect script if you're a Blues' fan. From that point on it seemed a fait accompli. Thankfully, the Stars put themselves in a position to have a mulligan, now they have to use it. Tuesday night's Game 7 back in St Louis will be win-or-go-home. It's total role-reversal from 2016, when the Stars lost Game 5 at home, went to St Louis and won Game 6, only to return home for a Game 7 and lose. Hopefully the Stars can draw on that to serve up a cold dish of Game 7 revenge. The Stars (and Bishop) have bounced back well after losses, they're gonna need to dig deep in order to do so in enemy territory once again.