Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Blues Shoot for 2-0 on Coast

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Blues Shoot for 2-0 on Coast

Article excerpt

The road to the Stanley Cup apparently is not a straight line.

And the Blues did win their opener by three goals, didn't they?

Yes, but that was Friday in San Jose. This was Saturday in Vancouver.

With coach-general manager Mike Keenan doing some long-distance lineup juggling, the Blues took on the Canucks late Saturday night at Pacific Coliseum.

Streaking center Adam Creighton and enforcer Tony Twist, of all people, had goals for the the Blues in the first period.

Craig Janney made it 3-0 at 5:45 of the second period, with Esa Tikkanen and Steve Duchesne getting the assists.

Curtis Joseph was airtight again in goal as the Canucks outshot the Blues 8-7 in the first.

In a clandestine move to meet the Canucks' size with size, Keenan sent three first-game starters to the press box, paroled one veteran from the scratch sheet and airlifted in a couple of rookies.

All this less than 24 hours after an impressive 5-2 victory in the opener Friday at San Jose.

Keenan benched undersized wingers Vitali Prokhorov, Philippe Bozon and Kevin Miller.

All stand 5 feet 9 or 5-10.

In their places were three 6-2 wingers: Vitali Karamnov, and rookies Craig Johnson and Patrice Tardif.

The move caught even Mike Caruso, the Blues' traveling secretary, short.

Despite Keenan's gameesmanship, it was the No. 1 line of Creighton, Brett Hull and Greg Gilbert that continued to drive the Blues.

Creighton got the game's first goal on the Blues' first shot, just two minutes into the game.

Al MacInnis shot the puck behind the net, and Gilbert fed Creighton in the right circle.

Creighton, who had a goal and three assists in the opener, then slapped the puck past Kay Whitmore.

He was a mystery starter in place of Canucks varsity goalie Kirk McLean, who played here the night before in a 1-1 tie with Dallas.

The Blues' second goal came from an unexpected source, to say the least.

Twist, in his 181st NHL game, was minding his own business on the fourth line when Karmanov rattled the puck loose on the right boards.

He found Twist midway up the slot, and the big bopper smoothly drilled the puck past Whitmore for his first career goal.

Later in the period, Twist celebrated more in character by slugging out a draw with Canucks ruffian Shawn Antoski. …

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