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Final 1 2 3 Tot
Minnesota 0 0 1 1
St. Louis 1 3 1 5
Blues win series 4-2
Three Stars
1: Ryan O'Reilly, StL (1G)
2: Jordan Binnington, StL (25 Saves)
3: David Perron, StL (2A)
6:30 PM PT7:30 PM MT8:30 PM CT9:30 PM ET1:30 GMT9:30 6:30 PM MST8:30 PM EST5:30 UAE (+1)21:30 ET22:30 BRT, May 12, 2022
Enterprise Center, St. Louis, Missouri  Attendance: 18,096

Vladimir Tarasenko-led Blues look to close out Wild

Minnesota Wild at St. Louis Blues

  1. This is the fourth playoff series in NHL history in which each of the first five games was decided by at least a three-goal margin. The others are Canadiens-North Stars in both 1971 (first five games) and 1980 (first six games), and Islanders-Bruins in 1983 (all six games).
  2. The Blues' last 10 playoff games were all decided by three-goal or larger margins (beginning with their final playoff game in 2020). It's the longest such streak in NHL playoff history.
  3. St. Louis has scored at least one power-play goal in each of the five games in this series. This is the Blues' longest PPG streak in one playoff year since 2019 (also five games) and their longest in one series since 2000, when they scored a power-play goal in all seven games of their first-round series against San Jose... and lost the series!
  4. Kirill Kaprizov and the Wild were shut out in the series opener, but he's scored seven goals in the four games since then. Since 2009, only two other NHL players scored as many as seven goals over a four-game span in one playoff year: Joe Pavelski for San Jose in 2010 and Mark Scheifele for Winnipeg in 2018.
  5. Vladimir Tarasenko scored three third-period goals to lead the Blues to a 5-2 win in Game 5. It was the third time a St. Louis player scored three goals in one period of a playoff game. Red Berenson did that in the second period of a game against the Kings in 1969, and Brendan Shanahan scored three second-period goals in a game at Vancouver in 1995.
  6. With his victories in Games 4 and 5, Jordan Binnington is now the Blues' career leader in playoff wins by a goalie (18). Only five other current NHL teams have a club record-holder with fewer than 20 playoff wins: Winnipeg (Hellebuyck 16), Florida (Vanbiesbrouck 13), Columbus (Bobrovsky 11), Minnesota (Dubnyk 8) and Seattle (never in playoffs).
(AP Photo/Jim Mone)

Vladimir Tarasenko and Karill Kaprizov continue their scoring duel when the St. Louis Blues host the Minnesota Wild in Game 6 of their first-round Western Conference series.

Kaprizov scored twice in Game 5 Tuesday to give the Wild a 2-1 lead, but Tarasenko responded with a third-period hat trick to give the Blues a 5-2 victory.

That sent the Blues home with a 3-2 edge in the best-of-seven series.

"Happy to win," said Tarasenko, who has four goals and an assist in this series. "Obviously happy to score, I'm not going to lie. But more happy to win."

The Blues won the Stanley Cup in 2019, but they have not won a playoff series since then. Now they are one victory away from a second-round matchup against the Colorado Avalanche, who swept the Nashville Predators in their series.

"It's not the time to think about any achievements," Tarasenko said. "The biggest thing is we won the game and let's move onto the next one. At this point with the experience in 2019, we learned that only wins matter and it's good we have a win."

Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington has won both starts since replacing Ville Husso in the nets after Game 3. His ability to handle the puck behind the net helped the depleted Blues defense corps, which regained Nick Leddy and Robert Bortuzzo in Game 5 but is still missing regulars Torey Krug and Marco Scandella due to lower-body injuries.

"(Binnington) did a hell of a job," Blues coach Craig Berube said. "I thought he made some big saves for us. I've talked about the puck play. He was excellent with that puck tonight. He killed a lot of their forecheck."

The Blues have put heavy emphasis on checking Kaprizov in this series, to no avail. His two goals gave him seven in the playoffs, which led all NHL players through Tuesday's games.

"Kaprizov just needs a little room," Berube said. "His shot is really good. And he's so strong. He's hard to handle. Heck of a player."

Through a translator, Kaprizov shrugged off his mounting goal total.

"The goal isn't for a player to play well. The goal is for the team to play well, and we didn't win," Kaprizov said. "Ultimately that's what we play for. We have a chance to make some changes to get the series back home for Game 7, and that's what we have to do."

Kaprizov sets the tempo for the Wild -- and coach Dean Evason would like to see more of his teammates playing at that tempo.

"He wills the team," Evason said. "He just didn't have enough guys willing alongside him tonight. If we had 20 of him, we'd be competing our butts off a little better."

With his team facing elimination, Evason expects to see a better team-wide effort in Game 6.

"We've seen our group respond and we're expecting our group to respond," Evason said. "It's a must-win. It's desperation. We're going to play our best game, all the cliches that you want to throw out there. It's one hockey game at a time, and we'll compete our butts off and see where we sit at the end of the night."

--Field Level Media

Updated May 12, 2022

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