Blackhawks present first true test for Blues

Blackhawks present first true test for Blues

Credit: Getty Images

Blackhawks present first true test for Blues

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by Scott Bierman / HockeyStL

KMOV.com

Posted on January 22, 2013 at 9:55 AM

Updated Monday, Oct 28 at 4:26 AM

(HockeyStL) -- If it isn’t broke, why fix it?  The Blues decided to start the same lineups used in the 6-0 win over the Red Wings Saturday to face the Predators on Monday afternoon.

The lineup, which produced only one even strength goal against the Red Wings, did not feature Jamie Langenbrunner, Matt D’Agostini and Jeff Woywitka.  All three players were listed as healthy scratches for the second consecutive game.  Newly acquired Blues defenseman Wade Redden was also unavailable, but could play Thursday night at home against the Predators.

The lineup will likely change for Tuesday night’s game against the Blackhawks.  It marks the third game in four days for the Blues and the team could use the fresh legs, especially on the penalty kill.  The Blues allowed two power play goals on six attempts Monday night.

The Blues face their greatest challenge Tuesday night when the puck drops for the home-opener in Chicago against the Blackhawks.

Like the Blues, the Blackhawks won their first two games.  The Blackhawks beat last year’s Stanley Cup winners, the Los Angeles Kings, 5-2 win on opening night and followed it with a 6-4 victory at the Coyotes on Sunday night.

Marian Hossa has been remarkable in the first two games compiling five points (four goals, one assist).  The Blackhawks will run into a Blues team built on defense.  The Blues have outshot their opponents 75-38 in two games; the Blackhawks have outshot their opponent 53-50.

Either one of these teams could represent the Western Conference during the Stanley Cup and it will be hard for either team to win Tuesday night.

For the Blues to win, they will need to overcome any possible fatigue of playing on back-to-back nights and also traveling to play another game on the road.

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