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At the Rink blog

Penguins start Fleury in goal, Blues go with Elliott

Sunday, 03.23.2014 / 12:20 PM

By Wes Crosby - NHL.com Correspondent / 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

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2013-2014 At the Rink Blog
Penguins start Fleury in goal, Blues go with Elliott

PITTSBURGH – The Pittsburgh Penguins and St. Louis Blues will make a change in net after each team played Saturday.

Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury will start for Pittsburgh in its second of back-to-back games this weekend. Goalie Jeff Zatkoff earned his 12th win of the season against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday.

Fleury is still searching for his 35th win of the season as the Penguins have not won in his past three starts. He has allowed three or more goals in each of his three starts since shutting out the Washington Capitals on March 11.

The Penguins and Blues are each chasing the Boston Bruins in the Presidents' Trophy race. St. Louis is two points behind Boston, while Pittsburgh trails by six. Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said Pittsburgh must win Sunday in order to have a chance at clinching the best record in the NHL.

"[The Blues are the] best team in the West. We're ready for them," Bylsma said. "I don't think we have a chance unless we win this game. So, that's the way we're approaching it."

Goalie Brian Elliott will start for St. Louis. Elliott is 4-1-1 in seven appearances against Pittsburgh with a .925 save percentage. He is 16-5-2 with a 2.06 goals-against average this season.

Goalie Ryan Miller allowed three goals on 18 shots in a 4-1 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday. Miller has a 3.28 goals-against average in 25 career starts against the Penguins, his second highest average against any team.

Bylsma joked that he would not mind if St. Louis had to use both Elliott and Miller Sunday.

"We'll take either one," Bylsma said. "I'd like to see them both today. I'd like to. I didn't say we're going to, I'd like to … They've only fortified themselves of a position in goal with Miller, getting Miller and we're expecting a heavy game from them."

Miller lost both of his starts against Pittsburgh this season while allowing seven goals with Buffalo.

Here are the expected lineups for the Penguins and Blues:

PENGUINS

Chris KunitzSidney CrosbyLee Stempniak

Jussi JokinenEvgeni MalkinJames Neal

Tanner GlassMarcel GocBrian Gibbons

Taylor PyattBrandon SutterCraig Adams

Brooks OrpikMatt Niskanen

Olli MaattaRob Scuderi

Robert BortuzzoSimon Despres

Marc-Andre Fleury

Jeff Zatkoff

Injured: Kris Letang (stroke), Paul Martin (broken hand), Beau Bennett (wrist/hand), Joe Vitale (upper body), Chris Conner (broken foot), Pascal Dupuis (ACL), Tomas Vokoun (pelvis)

Scratched: Deryk Engelland

BLUES

T.J. OshieAlexander SteenDavid Backes

Patrik BerglundVladimir SobotkaJaden Schwartz

Magnus PaajarviDerek RoySteve Ott

Dmitrij JaskinChris PorterRyan Reaves

Alex PietrangeloJay Bouwmeester

Kevin ShattenkirkBarret Jackman

Carlo ColaiacovoRoman Polak

Brian Elliott

Ryan Miller

Injured: Jordan Leopold (illness), Vladimir Tarasenko (hand), Brenden Morrow (undisclosed)

Scratched: Maxim LaPierre, Ian Cole

Quote of the Day

The groove of being behind a bench is going to be interesting at first, but thank God we have a few exhibition games to get rid of those cobwebs. Overall the excitement of it all and the freshness and coming back refreshed, all those things are going to be assets. If [the players] come ready to give their best effort in practice and games, good things are going to happen. I'm always looking for results. It's not always on the scoreboard. It's winning and building something.

— Bryan Trottier on making his return to coaching as an assistant with the Sabres