NHL Game Preview - Flames v Blues

 
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Final 1 2 3 Tot
Calgary 1 0 2 3
St. Louis 3 2 0 5
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5:00 PM PT6:00 PM MT7:00 PM CT8:00 PM ET0:00 GMT8:00 5:00 PM MST7:00 PM EST4:00 UAE (+1)20:00 ETNaN:� BRT, October 11, 2018
Enterprise Center, St. Louis, Missouri  Attendance: 16,403

Blues take aim at first win vs. visiting Flames

Calgary Flames at St. Louis Blues

  1. The Flames blanked the Predators, 3-0, making it two wins in a row. Calgary has scored on the power play five times this season, all in the past two games, tied for the second-most goals with the man advantage this season (Capitals -- 6).
  2. Sean Monahan scored two more goals against Nashville, bringing his total to four on the season with at least one in each game. He is the first Calgary player to score in the first three or more team games of the season since Gary Roberts in 1989-90 (5 games).
  3. The Blues lost in overtime against Chicago, 5-4, to fall to 0-1-1 on the season. The single point earned over their first two games is the fewest since 2006-07 (1 point). Additionally, the 10 goals St. Louis has yielded through two games are the most to start a season since 1991-92 (10 goals against).
  4. Jake Allen has allowed five goals in back-to-back games, joining Matt Murray as the only other goalie this season to allow five or more goals in his first two starts. Meanwhile, Mike Smith made 43 saves in shutting out the Predators, his most in a shutout since exactly one year prior (43; at Ducks -- 10/9/17).
  5. New Blues center Ryan O'Reilly added three assists against the Blackhawks, increasing his streak of games with at least one point to eight along the way. His active streak of tallying a point in each team game is tied for the third longest in the NHL behind Claude Giroux (14) and Auston Matthews (13).
  6. The Flames took more points in each of their last two season series with the Blues after St. Louis had taken more points in each of five season series before that. Mikael Backlund tallied at least a point in each of the three games (4 total: 2 G and 2 A) with St. Louis last season.

ST. LOUIS -- Is it too early for desperation from the St. Louis Blues?

"I think that we're still a little bit in a process of realizing, just remembering how hard it is and how desperate you have to play and do things well in order to win hockey games," Blues coach Mike Yeo told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

After earning just one point in a disjointed first two games, both on home ice, the Blues hope to find that winning level as they host the Calgary Flames on Thursday night.

St. Louis players and coaches have said it will take time to jell after turning over more than half of its top 12 forwards from last season. But they also realize that time is precious in the ultra-competitive Central Division.

"Guys that are playing well are going to play and guys that maybe don't deserve as much ice time aren't going to get it," Yeo told the Post-Dispatch. "We're here to build our team and we have to make sure we're on top of that.

"Now that said, obviously we have to be mindful of our young players, but I don't think we want to lose hockey games because we've got Vladdy Tarasenko sitting on the bench or Jaden Schwartz sitting in the bench too. We've got to walk that line."

The Blues could get some help on the blue line as veteran defenseman Joel Edmundson is expected to make his season debut against the Flames. Edmundson missed the first two games with a sore groin.

"We got some contact," Yeo told the Post-Dispatch following Tuesday's practice. "There will probably be a little more battle, a little bit more engagement in the physical side of things tomorrow. He got a little bit of it today. Today was a lot of up and down the ice, which I think was good for him, too. Another good day for him tomorrow and hopefully he's ready to go."

The Flames took two out of the three games against the Blues last season, but St. Louis won the only contest played on home ice.

After dropping the season opener, Calgary has won its last two and is coming off of a 3-0 win at Nashville on Tuesday. Center Sean Monahan scored twice against the Predators, giving him four goals on the season, and goalie Mike Smith made 43 saves for his 37th career shutout.

"Obviously it starts with Smitty, he played great for us," Monahan told NHL.com. "When you get goaltending like that it makes you go even more (motivated). So I think you start to play for him and you get some timely goals. I think we played good all around."

Calgary is riding hot special teams play. The Flames went 2-for-4 on the power play and killed off all four of the Predators' man advantages, including a full two minutes on a 5-on-3.

"Our power play was good tonight again, PK did a great job, especially that 5-on-3," Flames left winger Johnny Gaudreau told NHL.com. "We were smart with the puck, getting in their zone and playing down low in their zone. Found a way to get a couple of goals, get the lead and just keep playing the same way throughout the game."

Updated October 10, 2018

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