The St. Louis Blues were able to win the second game at home before heading back to San Jose for Game 5. The series is now tied at two games apiece as each team split games on their home ice.
Game 4 was another close one, showing again how evenly matched these teams are. The Blues were able to hold off the Sharks and win 2-1, and rookie goalie Jordan Binnington was named the first star of the game.
Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington stopped 29 of 30 shots on Friday night in game 4. Jordan has had a few tough games in the playoffs this year, but given that he is a rookie goalie on a team that has never won the Stanley Cup, he has done a phenomenal job helping the Blues get through the postseason.
Binnington is 10-7 so far in the playoffs with a 2.58 GAA, and a .908 save percentage. The Blues goaltender has played well enough against the tough teams out of the West to give them a very good chance to advance to the finals, but they will have to take it one game at a time and steal one in San Jose.
San Jose Sharks goaltender Martin Jones only let in two goals on 22 shots in Game 4. Although Jones did not allow many goals, the Sharks offense was not able to produce enough on the other side to get the job done.
Martin Jones has been almost identical to Binnington so far in the playoffs. He has the same 10-7 record, a 2.84 GAA, and a save percentage of .904. The two goals Jones let in during Game 4 was a series-best so far. Jones has given up three goals in one game and four goals in each of the other two. This gives the Sharks something positive to take home from Game 4 to get ready for Game 5.
The Series So Far
This series has been extremely close in many ways so far. This doesn’t come as a surprise given how similar these teams are. Both teams have exceptional defenses and good goaltenders. While the Sharks have the bigger name players such as Couture, Karlsson, Thornton, and Burns, the Blues are getting it done with lesser known guys like O’Reilly, Maroon, and Bozak.
This will continue to be a tight, competitive series going forward, which I believe will go all the way to a Game 7. Look for both teams to step up the physical play in the last few games and try to force their way into the Stanley Cup Finals to have a chance against the Boston Bruins.
As I have said many times, these teams are closely matched. It has not been easy to tell which team will edge out the other in any game so far in the series. To me, it seems like the Blues have been playing a little bit better hockey, but the Sharks have the veterans and All-Stars that are hard to count out.
Typically, I would lean to the home team in a tight series like this, but given that each team has dropped a game at home, I will take the Blues with the upset in Game 5 to take the lead in the series 3-2.