Monday, April 12, 2004

Blues Bite Back

The Sillinger household will be a balloon seller’s paradise whenever the season ends, when Mike Sillinger scored his third goal of the game pacing the Blues to a 4-1 victory over San Jose, a promise made in jest by his wife came to mind. It seems that Slingers’ boys back in Phoenix asked their Dad to score a hat trick this season, an event that would count as the first of his fourteen year career. His wife told the boys that should Dad get the hat trick she’d fill the house with balloons. Sillinger couldn’t have picked a better time to make the Mrs. to pony up the cash for balloons ,as he gave the Blues a chance to turn the negative press reviews around for one game.

Acquired by the Blues from Phoenix in early March, Sillinger was moved onto the Blues top line for game three. Taking shifts with Keith Tkachuk and Pavel Demitra proved to be the spark the Blues needed, as they finally found a way to put some pucks behind Evgeni Nabokov.

Another key for the Blues was the ability to stay out of the penalty box in game three. A marked departure from their behavior in game two when they spent far too much time in the box or trying to settle scores on the ice. By sticking to hockey they have managed to get themselves back into the series.

As Sharks Coach Ron Wilson put it after the game. “It was funny to read how the series was over after game number two”. Now we have to come back better prepared for the next game.”

A definite key for San Jose will be to shut down Sillinger, if they can keep him and his line mates off the score sheet in game four, the only balloons used in celebration will be in a house in Phoenix. For his part Sillinger is hoping he’s away from home until June, with a ring on one hand and a balloon or two in the other.

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