ST. LOUIS -- Despite its presence inside Enterprise Center, Lord Stanley’s Cup stayed hidden from sight Sunday night.
The Blues failed to clinch the series in Game 6, stifled by an outstanding performance from Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask. Rask made 28 saves in a 5-1 win for the Bruins to send the Stanley Cup Final back to Boston for a decisive Game 7 Wednesday night.
"Listen, if you told me four months ago we were going to be in the Final, Game 7, I think I'd take it," Blues coach Craig Berube said with a chuckle after Sunday's loss. "We've been a good road team. We've won twice up there in this series, so we're a confident group."
With thousands of people downtown in and around the arena ready to erupt for the home team, the Blues never gave them a real chance, missing on four power play opportunities throughout the evening to bring their rate with a man-advantage in the series to an inexplicably disappointing 1-for-18.
"I think most of us have let it go," Ryan O'Reilly said of the disappointment of not being able to clinch the series on home ice. "Yeah, of course we wanted to win. It didn't happen, we have to move on and prepare for the next one. We've got a lot of work ahead of us, and we're confident. We're a great road team, and maybe that's our story. We have to get it done on the road."
Jordan Binnington played a stout 40 minutes for St. Louis, allowing just one goal during a 5-on-3 through two periods. But things unraveled for the rookie goaltender in the third when Brandon Carlo scored on a bouncing shot that Binnington typically turns away in his sleep.
It was all downhill from there for the Blues, who were outscored 4-1 in the final period.
"He made some saves early, kept us in it maybe a little bit," Jay Bouwmeester said of Binnington's effort Sunday. "The end of the game got away, can't really judge anybody on that. But Binner's our guy. He'll respond, and I think everyone's looking forward to the next one."
Boston added its third goal of the night shortly thereafter, so by the time Ryan O'Reilly lit the lamp late in the third to put the Blues on the board, the comeback effort already looked bleak. St. Louis gave up another goal before pulling Binnington unusually early, leading to an empty-netter.
It all comes down to one game in enemy territory. While the Blues performance in road games throughout these playoffs has been tremendous, they'll need to play the game of their lives Wednesday night if they're going to beat Tuukka Rask in a Game 7.