Preview: Hurricanes at Blues
The St. Louis Blues find themselves taking on water after dropping five of their last six contests (1-4-1) following a sterling 30-10-7 start to the season. The defending Stanley Cup champions bid to right the ship on Tuesday when they open a three-game homestand against the Carolina Hurricanes.
Tuesday's contest will feature two defensemen playing against their former teams for the first time since a trade on Sept. 24, although St. Louis' Justin Faulk did his best to downplay the encounter. "It's hard to say that you didn't know it was coming," the 27-year-old Faulk said after practice Monday. "I knew that it was coming, but other than that I wasn't really thinking about it too much. It'll be good to see some guys and catch up with some old friends and old teammates. It'll be fun to play against them." Faulk certainly had fun in helping the Hurricanes advance to the Eastern Conference final in the spring, but fellow blue-liner Joel Edmundson had considerably more while contributing in the Blues' run to the franchise's first Stanley Cup title. Edmundson, who will receive his Stanley Cup ring prior to the game, was coupled with prospect Dominik Bokk and a seventh-round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft in the trade for Faulk.
TIME: 8 p.m. ET. TV: FS Carolinas, FS Midwest
ABOUT THE HURRICANES (30-19-3): Carolina improved to 3-1-0 since the return of former captain Justin Williams, who scored the winning shootout goal for the second time in four contests during Sunday's 4-3 victory over Vancouver. Andrei Svechnikov has also heated up with the return of Williams, collecting two goals and two assists in that span. Teuvo Teravainen, who leads the team in assists (40) and points (51), has scored two goals and set up four others during a three-game point streak while fellow Finn Sebastian Aho has tallied in back-to-back contests to lift his club-best goal total to 26.
ABOUT THE BLUES (31-14-8): Coach Craig Berube wasn't thrilled with St. Louis' recent results, and Monday's spirited practice perhaps served as a wake-up call for his charges. "You come home after a trip like that, with (Sunday) off, I just wanted to push a little bit today, get guys going again," Berube said. "You fall into a trap coming home after a trip like that, so I just thought that we'd push a little bit harder." Zach Sanford extended his point streak to five games (two goals, five assists) after setting up a goal by Ryan O'Reilly in the second period of Saturday's 5-2 setback to Winnipeg.
1. Carolina D Jaccob Slavin is riding a three-game assist streak.
2. St. Louis C Brayden Schenn has scored just six of his 18 goals at home this season.
3. Hurricanes LW Warren Foegele notched a pair of assists on Sunday after being held off the scoresheet in 10 of his previous 12 games.
PREDICTION: Hurricanes 3, Blues 2