|Blues aim to snap skid vs. visiting Knights|
The St. Louis Blues will try to snap their first losing streak of the season when they host the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday night.
While the Blues do have a four-game losing skid this season, and another three-game slide, they still earned points for going into overtime during those runs. This is the first time the Blues have suffered three consecutive regulation losses.
"We've got to find a way to win," Blues coach Craig Berube told reporters after a 5-2 road loss to the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday night. "We've got to fight through this adversity. You're going to hit bumps in the road like this, you have to fight through it and get through it."
The Golden Knights have earned points in six of their last seven games (5-1-1), including their 5-1 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday.
Center William Karlsson scored his first goal in 11 games while winger Reilly Smith continued his strong play with a goal and an assist. He has eight points (three goals, five assists) in his last eight games.
Golden Knights goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury was sharp in his first appearance since Nov. 23. He took leave from the team after the death of his father.
"I wasn't shaking nervous, but I felt it a little bit," Fleury said. "It's been a little while since I played, and I felt maybe the last couple of practices and warmups, I was thinking, 'Man, I should've stopped that one, or that one,' instead of just relaxing a bit. I think that's what happens when you miss a little while."
Fleury is 5-7-2 with a 2.60 goals-against average and a .917 save percentage in 14 career starts against the Blues.
Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington beat the Golden Knights the only time he has faced them, prevailing 3-1 last March 25.
He will hope for more offensive support if he gets the call as expected Thursday. The Blues scored just four goals during their three-game downturn.
"We have enough veteran guys that we know, the goals will come," Blues forward Troy Brouwer told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "We have to keep them out of our net. This is a great defensive team. We've had a couple lapses and we've played some opportunistic teams in Toronto, tonight (at Buffalo) and Pittsburgh. When we make those mistakes, it's costing us. A lot of times, I feel this team can cover up these mistakes."
The Blues might get injured forwards Alexander Steen (ankle) and Oskar Sundqvist (foot) back from the injured list to face the Golden Knights at Enterprise Center. Both made the trip to Buffalo and both have been skating with the team.
Forward Zach Sanford (upper body) is more doubtful and forwards Sammy Blais (wrist surgery) and Vladimir Tarasenko (shoulder surgery) remain out for a longer term.
AHL call-ups Jordan Kyrou and Austin Poganski filled in Tuesday night in Buffalo. Kyrou made his first Blues appearance of the season and Poganski made his NHL debut.
The Golden Knights played without injured centers Cody Glass (concussion) and Cody Eakin against Chicago. Forward Valentin Zykov saw his first NHL action since serving a 20-game suspension for violating the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program.
--Field Level Media