The NHL schedule lasts more than six months, but the St. Louis Blues are getting their trips to Denver out of the way early.
St. Louis and the Avalanche tangled in Colorado Nov. 1, and 10 days later, they’ll do it again when the Blues come to town Saturday night. The Avalanche won that first meeting, 4-1, which snapped them out of a two-game slump, and they hope that remedy works again.
Colorado is coming off a 4-3 loss to Seattle on Thursday night in a game decided on a goal in the final minute after rallying to tie it in the third period.
The Avalanche are 2-4 since opening the season with six straight wins and might not have Artturi Lehkonen available for Saturday night. Lehkonen was injured in the second period against the Kraken when he went head-first into the boards following a collision with Seattle’s Jamie Oleksiak.
Lehkonen was down on the ice for a minute, skated to the locker room with help from a team trainer and was taken to a Denver hospital as a precaution.
“He’s obviously one of the toughest guys on the team,” Colorado defenseman Cale Makar said. “He’s hard as nails. Especially when he doesn’t get up, you get a little worried because it could be something a little more serious. … Hopefully everything goes well because obviously he’s a huge part for us.”
The Avalanche didn’t practice Friday and did not provide an update on Lehkonen’s condition. If he can’t go, Jonathan Drouin, a healthy scratch Thursday, could be put back in the lineup.
The Blues come to town after a 2-1 win over Arizona but with some things to work on. The power play has been nonexistent for St. Louis, going 1-for-35 this season, which is the worst percentage in the NHL. The Blues were 0-for-7 with the man advantage against the Coyotes.
“Obviously you want to be better, you want to help the team out,” said Rob Thomas, who had the game winner in the second period.
Thomas has been doing his part with goals in five straight games for St. Louis, a team trying to find some consistency. The Blues have won three of their last four, and Wednesday night showed they can bounce back from some adversity after Arizona tied the game late in the first period.
“I thought we did a good job of responding and not getting overwhelmed when things weren’t going our way,” St. Louis defenseman Torey Krug said. “That’s the sign of a team that’s growing up a little bit. We’ve got to continue that. There’s always that next play to be made, there’s always going to be another power play when you do make those mistakes. We’ve got to continue with that.”
The Blues are looking to end a losing streak to Colorado, too. Dating back to last season, the Avalanche have won four in a row over St. Louis and also beat them in six games in the 2022 Stanley Cup playoffs.
–Field Level Media
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