Preview: Wild at Blues
The St. Louis Blues' long haul without Vladimir Tarasenko continues on Wednesday, when they host the shell-shocked Minnesota Wild. Tarasenko, who has scored at least 33 goals each of the last five seasons, underwent shoulder surgery on Tuesday and will be re-evaluated in five months.
The 27-year-old Russian, who has recorded three tallies and seven assists in 10 games this campaign, suffered a dislocated shoulder in the first period of Thursday's victory over Los Angeles and missed each of the Blues' next two contests, including a 5-4 overtime win at Detroit on Sunday. Ryan O'Reilly and David Perron each recorded a four-point performance, with the former scoring his second goal of the game late in the third period to forge a tie before the latter tallied 1:28 into the extra session. Minnesota has little time to recover from Tuesday's devastating 6-3 loss in Dallas that extended its road losing streak to four games. The Wild, who were blanked in each of their previous two contests away from home, built a 3-0 lead before yielding six unanswered goals - including five during a third period in which they were outshot 18-6.
TV: 8 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network
ABOUT THE WILD (4-8-0): Eric Staal and Jason Zucker both scored a goal and set up another against the Stars, with the latter climbing within one assist of 100 for his career. Staal, who celebrated his 35th birthday on Tuesday, has collected four tallies and three assists over his last five contests after notching just one point (assist) in his first seven games of 2019-20. Defenseman Brad Hunt recorded an assist versus Dallas to give him seven points - more than half of his total in 42 contests last campaign (12) and 11 shy of the career-best amount that he registered over 45 games with Vegas in 2017-18.
ABOUT THE BLUES (6-3-3): O'Reilly, who has reached the 20-goal plateau each of the last four seasons, had recorded just one point in his previous seven games and one goal in 11 overall contests this campaign before breaking out against the Red Wings. The 28-year-old reigning Conn Smythe Trophy winner's first tally of 2019-20 also came in a four-point effort on Oct. 10 at Ottawa. Perron has landed on the scoresheet in four of his last five games and is two assists shy of 300 for his career.
1. Blues LW Alex Steen missed the third period on Sunday due to a lower-body injury and is questionable to face Minnesota.
2. Minnesota D Matt Dumba is one assist shy of 100 for his career while LW Marcus Foligno needs two to reach the century mark.
3. St. Louis F Brayden Schenn, who leads the team in goals (nine) and points (13), is expected to skate in his 600th NHL game on Wednesday.
PREDICTION: Blues 4, Wild 2