It’s time to look at the bigger picture.
Allow me to be clear: the officiating in this series has been horseshit, and Gabriel Landeskog should’ve gotten called for a slash when he snapped Brayden Schenn’s stick in two.
That’s not why the Blues are down 3-0 in the series. Trying to deflect blame to botched calls isn’t cutting it, Chief. Craig Berube went off when asked about the missed call on Landeskog last night:
“Yeah, he broke his stick,” Berube said. “The refereeing, every game, we get one or two calls. It’s usually late in the third period.
“They’re getting four a game, five. How many did they get tonight? Five? I mean, it’s not that lopsided. I’m not sure why we don’t get the calls we deserve.
“(Colton) Parayko gets tripped in the corner, they score a goal on the goalie challenge goal, he gets tripped in the corner – slew-footed – and they don’t call it and it cost us a goal. It’s terrible. It’s so one-sided it’s not even funny.”
If this sounds familiar, it’s because Berube snapped about the officiating in the Stanley Cup Final in 2019. So did Bruins’ coach Bruce Cassidy. It’s how coaches both show some gamemanship and manage not to get a Tortorella-sized fine by showing their displeasure.
It’s valid, it’s fine, but it’s not why the Blues are about to get swept out of Enterprise Center tomorrow afternoon.
The Blues don’t have David Perron, their top scorer and arguably heart of the team this season – and it shows on the ice.
They were missing Justin Faulk and Robert Bortuzzo last night, both knocked out of the series by high Avalanche hits (and it in a true dereliction of officiating duty, only one of them recieved any punishment whatsoever).
Their top forwards have done next to nothing. It’s hard to “compete really hard,” as Berube said the Blues did, without getting that from all hands on the deck. Ryan O’Reilly has the same number of points as Kyle Clifford – an assist. Vladimir Tarasenko has none. Jaden Schwartz has none. Brayden Schenn has a goal. Jordan Kyrou has a goal.
No member of the Blues has more than two points in three games against the Avalanche.
The officiating sucks. It sucks in every series, for every team – just ask their fans. It sucked in Game Six in 2019 and the Blues benefited from it – but the Bruins lost that game on their own. It sucks now, and the Blues aren’t finding a way to attempt to play better. They shouldn’t be motivated to play better because of the refs anyway, they should be motivated to play better because they want to win.
The Avalanche are a better team, but the Blues have been able to beat them – when the effort’s there. If the offense put forth more of it, maybe the team wouldn’t have to worry about terrible officiating quite as much.