Saturday, October 28, 2017

(10-28-17) Blue Jackets-Blues Gameday Lineup

ST. LOUIS -- At 8-2-1, the Blues are off to their best 11-game start since going 8-1-2 in 2013-14 and will look to keep the run going when they play the third set of back-to-backs this season, hosting the Columbus Blue Jackets today at Scottrade Center (7 p.m.; FS-MW, KMOX 1120-AM).

The Blues, who have a point in five straight games (4-0-1), are coming off a 2-1 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday. Center Brayden Schenn scored the game-winner midway through the third period.

The eight wins in 11 games is impressive for the Blues on a number of fronts, including the injured players missing at the start of the season and playing eight of 11 away from home, where the Blues are one of two teams (Tampa Bay Lightning at 6-0-0) unbeaten on home ice (3-0-0).

"This league never allows us a whole lot of time to sit around and be happy about things," Blues coach Mike Yeo said. "We will be for a little bit, but obviously we get to work here with  Columbus. That'll be a tough one. It doesn't do you much good unless you can take advantage of the home games. That'll be the challenge now."

Now the Blues will entertain one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference in the Blue Jackets (7-3-0), who are off to their best 10-game start in franchise history after a 2-1 overtime win on home ice Friday over the Winnipeg Jets.

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The Blues recalled goalie Ville Husso from the San Antonio Rampage of the American Hockey League on Saturday morning.

Goalie Carter Hutton, who backstopped the Blues on Friday with a 26-save performance to improve to 3-0-0 on the season, and his wife are expecting the couple's first child and could miss the game tonight, and Husso would be thrust in to backup Jake Allen, who will get the nod tonight.

Husso, 22, has appeared in three games with the Rampage this season, posting a 2-1-0 record along with a 2.69 goals-against average and a .927 save percentage; he was drafted by the Blues in the fourth round of the 2014 NHL Draft.

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With an assist on Schenn's winner Friday, Blues left wing Jaden Schwartz is third in the NHL with 15 points (seven goals, eight assists) and is on a six-game point streak (five goals, three assists). 

Blues right wing Vladimir Tarasenko, who hasn't scored in four games but does have four assists, has 13 points (seven goals, six assists) in 11 career games against Columbus.

The Blues will play six of the next seven on home ice and 11 of the next 15 at Scottrade Center.

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Neither team held a morning skate Saturday after playing Friday, so lineup decisions/changes will come later this afternoon. Yeo will address the media at 5:30 p.m.

(UPDATED) -- Yeo said the Blues will go with the lineup that won in Carolina, but Hutton will not be backing Allen up. 

"Everybody did their job," Yeo said. "Obviously 'Jasky' got a goal there last game, so it's good for him. Let's see if he can build off that."
The Blues' projected lineup:

Alexander Steen-Paul Stastny-Vladimir Sobotka

Jaden Schwartz-Brayden Schenn-Vladimir Tarasenko

Magnus Paajarvi-Oskar Sundqvist-Beau Bennett

Scottie Upshall-Kyle Brodziak-Dmitrij Jaskin

Joel Edmundson-Alex Pietrangelo

Carl Gunnarsson-Colton Parayko

Vince Dunn-Robert Bortuzzo

Jake Allen will start in goal; Ville Husso will be the backup.

Healthy scratches are Nate Prosser, Chris Thorburn and Carter Hutton. Jay Bouwmeester (ankle), Patrik Berglund (shoulder) and Zach Sanford (shoulder) are out.

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The Blue Jackets' projected lineup:

Artemi Panarin-Nick Foligno-Josh Anderson

Boone Jenner-Brandon Dubinsky-Cam Atkinson

Matt Calvert-Alexander Wennberg-Oliver Bjorkstrand

Sonny Milano-Zac Dalpe-Pierre-Luc Dubois

Zach Werenski-Seth Jones

Jack Johnson-David Savard

Ryan Murray-Markus Nutivaara

Joonas Korpisalo will make his third start; Sergei Bobrovsky, who made 29 saves Friday, will be the backup.

Healthy scratfhes include Markus Hannikainen and Scott Harrington. Gabriel Carlsson (upper body) and Lukas Sedlak (ankle) are injured.

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