St. Louis Blues (22-6-3) at Ottawa Senators (13-15-6)
|Date & Time||Monday December 16, 2013, 7:30 PM (EST)|
The Line: Ottawa Senators +143 / St. Louis Blues -157 --- Over/Under: 5.5
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At 22-6-3 on the season we know that the St. Louis Blues are one of the NHL's elite clubs. This Blues team is one that doesn't have much to prove in the regular season and with the way they've struggled in the post season the past few years is at the point where they have to step up. After a 5-2 loss to the Ducks in early December the Blues have rolled off three straight victories, and St. Louis is finding the back of the net with regularity. The Blues have always been a club that focuses on defense and limiting their opponents chances but so far this year they have been able to find a good offensive flow as well. Saturday night they rallied from a 3-1 first period deficit in Columbus to beat the Blue Jackets 4-3. Vladimir Tarasenko got the Blues on the board first with his 10th goal of the season and he cut the lead to 3-2 with his second of the night and 11th of the year in the second. In the third period it was Chris Stewart who tied the game with his seventh goal of the season and just 22 seconds into overtime David Backes scored the game winner. Backes has been excellent all season long and should be a huge force for the U.S. Olympic team in February in Sochi. The Blues will look to take advantage of an Ottawa Senators club that has been a huge disappointment so far this season. Ottawa is just 13-15-6 this year and just can't string together wins. The Senators were looking to make it two in a row against the Los Angeles Kings but that dream died quickly when they allowed three first period goals. Joe Corvo and Erik Karlsson scored to cut the deficit to 3-2 but that's as close as Ottawa would get in the 5-2 defeat. Craig Anderson and Robin Lehner haven't been anywhere near as good as the Senators know they can be the Ottawa has more problems than just in goal. There's still time to turn things around but this hockey club has to get moving before it's too late. A matchup with the Blues isn't the greatest way to get things going in the right direction however.