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Monday, May 16, 2016

NHL Peachy: Morning Skate: Stanley Cup Playoffs Edition – May 16, 2016 Our Coverage Sponsored by Maine Woolens

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Home Team in Caps
ST. LOUIS 2, San Jose 1– STL leads 1-0

Brian Elliott made 32 saves, including five in the final three minutes of regulation, andJori Lehtera scored the tiebreaking goal midway through the second period to help the Blues win the opening game of the Western Conference Final.

* Elliott, who led the League in save percentage (.930) and tied for second in goals-against average (2.07) during the regular season, improved to 9-6 in the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs (2.20 GAA, .932 SV%, 1 SO).

* Elliott improved to 4-0 with a 1.29 goals-against average and .954 save percentage in five career postseason appearances against the Sharks. In the 2012 Conference Quarterfinals, Elliott entered Game 2 in relief of Jaroslav Halak (W) to record a combined shutout before winning the next three contests to help the Blues eliminate the Sharks in five games.

* Lehtera, who has 2-7—9 in 20 career playoff games, notched his only other postseason goal exactly one minute into the Blues’ Game 7 victory in the First Round vs. CHI.

* The Blues hold a 1-0 series lead against the Sharks for the third time in five all-time playoff meetings (also 2000 and 2001 CQF). Overall, teams that win Game 1 of theConference Finals own an all-time series record of 67-29 (.698).

Brian Elliott made seven of his saves against Sharks captain Joe Pavelski – who shares the League lead with nine goals this postseason – including point-blank stops in the second and third periods. The two players, who are meeting in the playoffs for a second time (also 2012 CQF) won an NCAA championship together with the University of Wisconsin in 2006 (photo courtesy of @BadgerMHockey).

Blues captain David Backes scored the opening goal and paced all players with 11 hits – three shy of San Jose’s team total (STL: 28, SJS: 14) and the most by a player in one game in the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs. He ranks second in the League with 68 hits this postseason (15 GP) and shares the team lead with 7-6—13, matching his point total from his first 29 career playoff contests (5-8—13).

* Sharks forward Joe Thornton needed help finding the puck after it got lost in his gear.

* Jo Paw-velski was adopted Friday after becoming the unofficial good luck charm of the Sharks during the Second Round.

All Times Eastern
Tampa Bay @ Pittsburgh, 8:00 p.m., TBL leads 1-0, NBCSN, CBC, TVAS

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