Preview: Blues at Jets
The St. Louis Blues look to match the effort from their best performance of the season last time out when they complete a three-game trip through Canada with a matchup against the Winnipeg Jets on Monday night. The Blues snapped a three-game losing streak with a 4-1 victory at Toronto on Saturday, limiting the high-flying Maple Leafs to 23 shots and getting goals from four different players.
“It was pretty textbook hockey. Everyone bought in,” St. Louis goalie Jake Allen told reporters. “That was nice to see. Everyone came to play and. … if we do that every night, the majority of the times we’ll be in games and have a good chance of success.” The Blues hope to avoid a repeat of the 5-1 loss to the Jets on opening night and Winnipeg takes a four-game point streak (3-0-1, all at home) into the contest after outlasting Arizona 5-3 on Saturday night. Jets captain Blake Wheeler told reporters his team is still trying to find its A-game while averaging three goals, but Winnipeg has allowed just one in four of its five victories. “If we thought we were going to come in and thought it would be easy, that’s not the way this works,” Wheeler told reporters of his team, which reached the Western Conference finals a season ago. “I think we’re sticking with it through the frustration, through the grind right now. I think that’s a real positive. We’re trying to figure out what we are, what we do well. We’ll get there. We’re just not there yet.”
TV: 8 p.m. ET, NHL Network, FS Midwest (St. Louis), TSN3 (Winnipeg)
ABOUT THE BLUES (2-3-2): David Perron and Ryan O’Reilly each had two points against Toronto and lead the team with seven while fellow forwards Brayden Schenn and Vladimir Tarasenko have contributed six each. Veteran defenseman Jay Bouwmeester (one assist, minus-4 rating) was a healthy scratch for the first time in his career Saturday as he remained one point shy of 400 for his career. “I’m not gonna talk a lot about it because nobody likes being in this position,” Bouwmeester told the St. Louis Dispatch. “But it’s the nature of the business. … You deal with it, that’s all you can do.”
ABOUT THE JETS (5-2-1): Defenseman Josh Morrissey registered his second two-point game of the season Saturday and shares the team lead at seven with forward Kyle Connor. “I think I’ve been happy with the work I’ve put in the offseason,” the 23-year-old Morrissey, who had a career-best 26 points in 2017-18, told the Winnipeg Free Press. “I think some of those things are starting to feel pretty good, but it’s a long season.” Patrik Laine owns three goals on a team-best 31 shots while fellow forward Nikolaj Ehlers is still looking for his first tally since April 3 – a drought of 25 games, including playoffs.
1. The Jets are 7-for-20 on the power play and the Blues had the second-most goals with the man advantage (nine) through Saturday.
2. Winnipeg F Adam Lowry, who posted eight goals in 45 games last season, has four in the first eight contests of 2018-19.
3. St. Louis D Alex Pietrangelo had six points in the first five games of 2017-18 and managed just one in the first seven this season.