Goaltender Chad Johnson played well in the Blues’ first preseason game.
The St. Louis Blues played their first preseason game last night, in Dallas. They lost the game, but there were developments in many camp story lines that bode well for the regular season.
Coach Mike Yeo took only a few of the projected regular lineup to Dallas. Established players like Tarasenko, Schenn, Schwartz and Pietrangelo stayed home. This game was about seeing what certain players can bring to the table.
Jordan Kyrou brought plenty. He was all over the ice Tuesday night, shooting on goal 7 times and putting one in. He brought the pop to the snap and crackle of Maroon and O’Reilly on the top line. He did nothing but help his chances of making the roster when the team breaks camp.
Likewise, goalie Chad Johnson played well. He stopped 15 of 16 shots faced before giving way to Jordan Binnington. And he did so facing a pretty loaded Stars lineup.
Dmitrij Jaskin also scored, helping himself stand out amid all the faces trying to impress. He and Maroon accounted for 2 of the 3 goals by the Blues. Ryan O’Reilly won 7 out of 11 faceoffs taken (good as advertised).
Jordan Binnington allowed 3 goals on 8 shots in his period of work. Not sharp, but he’s pretty firmly entrenched as the #3 netminder on the depth chart.*
All told, there was a lot to like, despite losing the game. Kyrou looks to be all that is promised, and his quality play ups the pressure on several players fighting for the last couple of forward spots. Johnson was good in net, more than capable of minding the fort in Jake Allen’s absence. Maroon agitated and also scored. Parayko bombed shots and led the defense.
The Blues are in Minnesota tonight for preseason game #2.
*Clarification: Ville Husso is #3 on the depth chart, behind Jake Allen and Chad Johnson. Binnington is likely #4.