(HockeyStL) -- It doesn’t matter if Jaroslav Halak is healthy enough to return or not -- Ken Hitchcock will be making a goalie change.
Brian Elliott was given the nod in each of the last three games with Halak sitting out with a lower-body injury. In that stretch, Elliott allowed 14 goals in the 154 minutes and nine seconds played -- all losses.
“Not playing very good,” Hitchcock said. “Not much I can say, he’s not playing very good. He’ll be the first to tell you too. He’s got to play better.”
If Halak, who is expected to take shots in between now and the next game, can’t play Monday then the Blues will turn to Jake Allen. Allen relieved Elliott in the second period of a 6-1 loss to the Predators Tuesday.
“A goalie is no different than a defenseman or a forward,” Hitchcock added. “Guys come in and out of the lineup based on their performance. You can’t stay in the lineup if you don’t perform well. I don’t care who you are so he’s got to play better.”
The first goal of the night for the Ducks is a sign of just how bad things have gone for Elliott lately.
The goal, which came on the team’s first shot, appeared to be a routine wrister from Bobby Ryan, but Elliott couldn’t make the stop with his blocker as it fluttered past him. A goal that should have never happened.
The defenseman have openly shared part of the blame for the recent scoring fest in the back of the Blues net.
“He’s getting hung out to dry,” Kevin Shattenkirk said. “You look at some of them tonight, he’s facing the shot and there’s just guys sitting back door putting in rebounds -- that’s on us, that’s not on him. We know that and I know he’s frustrated, but we just got to work better for him.”
The Blues will play next against the Kings on Monday.