Preview: Blues at Rangers
Send a link to a friend
[November 01, 2016]
The St. Louis Blues zipped off
to a fast start this season with three consecutive victories, capped
by a 3-2 win over the New York Rangers. The Blues have struggled
since that time, particularly on offense, which could be an issue
when they visit on the high-scoring New York Rangers on Tuesday
night in a rematch.
St. Louis won for only the second time in six games by squeezing out
a 1-0 home victory over Los Angeles, marking the fifth time in that
span it has produced only one goal. "We're playing kind of like
Italian soccer, 1-0, good defense, and it's just one goal. It's
enough," Blues center Jori Lehtera said. New York has no such
concerns lighting up the scoreboard, netting at least five goals on
four occasions. The Rangers won for the fourth time in five games
with a 6-1 demolition of Tampa Bay on Sunday that featured a
four-goal second-period blitz.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, FSN Midwest (St. Louis), MSG Plus (New York)
ABOUT THE RANGERS (6-3-0): Michael Grabner pumped in 34 goals in
2010-11 with the New York Islanders, but he managed only 29 tallies
in his previous three seasons combined. Now in his first season with
the Rangers, Grabner is coming off his first hat trick since that
34-goal campaign and combined with linemates Kevin Hayes and J.T.
Miller to amass nine points. "They're great players, I just tried to
use my speed to open up some room for them," Grabner said. "I think
we could have had a couple more."
[to top of second column]
ABOUT THE BLUES (5-2-2): St. Louis was mired in an eight-period
drought without a goal by a forward before Jaden Schwartz struck in
the third period for the game-winner against the Kings. Blues coach
Ken Hitchcock shuffled his lines prior to the game in an effort to
juice up the offense, but maintained he's not overly concerned by
the lack of scoring. "The first 15 or 20 games of the season is like
the playoffs," Hitchcock said. "Most teams are healthy and this is
the type of energized hockey you get."
1. Rangers F Chris Kreider, who has missed four straight games due
to neck spasms, returned to practice Monday.
2. Blues G Jake Allen is 0-1-0 with five goals allowed in two starts
versus St. Louis.
3. Grabner is tied with rookie Jimmy Vesey for the team lead with
PREDICTION: Rangers 3, Blues 2
[© 2016 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2016 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.