By Michael Walters
The Anaheim Ducks(37-20-9) finish their brief road trip against the St. Louis Blues(39-20-9). The Ducks have played the Blues twice and split the first two games. Tonight is the third and final regular season meeting. The game tonight starts at 5PM.
Keys To The Game:
1. 60 Minute Game: The Ducks started the game against the Avalanche fine, but halfway through the first period Colorado carried the play for most of the rest of the game going forward. The absence of Sami Vatanen didn’t help especially in the second period when Anaheim gave up several odd man rushes.
2. To The Net: The Ducks had plenty of shots against Colorado on Wednesday, but they was hardly any traffic in front of the net. The Ducks need to get back to crashing the net and getting to the loose rebounds.
1. Offense: The Blues have averaged almost four goals a game in their last four contests. If they can score three to four goals, then they will put themselves in a good position to win.
2. Turnovers: The Blues have burned the Ducks in the past two meetings by causing turnovers and creating odd man rushes. If they pick the right moments, then they will be to get quality scoring chances.
Players To Watch:
1. Nick Ritchie: He hasn’t scored a goal yet at the NHL level while with Anaheim in 23 games. Tonight would be a great night for him to get his first.
2. Jamie McGinn: He was tied for the team lead in shots last game with four. He was one of the few players that went to the net and tried to make plays.
1. Vladimir Tarasenko: He leads the Blues with 56 points(30G + 26A). He leads the team with 12 power play goals and five game winning goals. He is always a threat to score when he is on the ice.
2. David Backes: He is tied for second in goals scored with 17. He has four points in his last four games.
Sami Vatanen and Nate Thompson both missed practice yesterday. Bruce Boudreau stated that Vatanen will not play. Shawn Horcoff is also eligible to play, but it doesn’t appear he will be in the lineup.
St. Louis Blues Projected Lineup (Per):
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