|4:00 PM PT5:00 PM MT6:00 PM CT7:00 PM ET0:00 GMT8:00 5:00 PM MST7:00 PM EST4:00 UAE (+1)19:00 ET21:00 BRT, February 24, 2019
Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, Minnesota Attendance: 18,645
Red-hot Blues look to even score with Wild
St. Louis Blues at Minnesota Wild
- The Blues defeated the Wild in Minnesota on February 17, 4-0, snapping a five-game losing streak against them. The last time the Blues won back-to-back games in St. Paul was in the 2013-14 season.
- Bruins host rested Jackets in Game 1
- Familiar faces clash as Blues host Stars
- Pavelski unlikely for Sharks-Avs opener
- Vegas owner: NHL admitted refs blew call
- Leafs' Hyman has knee tear, out 6 months
The St. Louis Blues needed to go the extra mile to regain their footing after a brief stumble brought an abrupt end to their franchise-record 11-game winning streak.
Fresh off a six-round shootout victory, the red-hot Blues look to hit the ground running when they vie for their 13th win in 14 outings on Sunday night against the host Minnesota Wild.
Minnesota posted a pair of victories over St. Louis in November before the Blues returned the favor with a resounding 4-0 triumph last Sunday. St. Louis recorded an overtime win versus Toronto two nights later before being unceremoniously dumped by Dallas, 5-2, on Thursday.
Rookie Jordan Binnington returned to form and made 31 saves before thwarting five of six attempts in the shootout in Saturday's 2-1 win over Boston. The 25-year-old, who also turned aside 31 shots against the Wild last week, will likely take a seat in favor of Jake Allen on Sunday.
Allen is well-rested after turning aside all 32 shots he faced in a 3-0 victory at Colorado on Feb. 16. The 28-year-old, however, yielded five goals on 45 shots in a 5-1 setback to Minnesota on Nov. 3.
While the Blues have been hot on the ice, several members of the team -- including Alexander Steen -- are dealing with flu-like symptoms.
"That's the way she goes sometimes. You got to roll with the punches. As a group, we do a good job here of staying pretty mentally strong," said Steen, who scored in the first period Saturday for his first goal since Nov. 30.
Minnesota has shown signs of getting healthier in the standings, answering a five-game skid by winning back-to-back road contests.
A return home, however, may not be music to ears of the Wild, who have lost six in a row at the Xcel Energy Center.
"We wanted to make a conscious effort of it at the start of the year to be a better road team, but it seems to have taken a little bit away from our game at home," said Eric Staal, who ended an 11-game goal drought by scoring in Friday's 3-2 win over Detroit.
"I think sometimes the way we've been squeezing the sticks a little bit -- a lot of our offensive guys are doing that -- it can be a place where there's a little bit more pressure, and it can build on you. Sometimes on the road it's a little freer."
The road ahead for Minnesota is a daunting one, as it faces a string of difficult opponents in Winnipeg, Calgary, Nashville (twice) and NHL-best Tampa Bay on its schedule.
"I saw this two and a half months ago, and it wasn't something that you want to go through, but it either makes or breaks you," Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said. "You prove that you can play with the big boys or you get washed away."
Minnesota's Zach Parise has just one of his team-leading 24 goals versus the Blues this season.
Wild defenseman Ryan Suter, whose 34 assists are tied with Mikael Granlund for top honors on the team, has been held off the scoresheet in each of his last four games overall and all three meetings with St. Louis.
--Field Level Media
Updated February 24, 2019