ST. LOUIS -- The NHL's longest layoff following the All-Star break had no ill effects on the St. Louis Blues
, who shook off any rust after being off for 10 days and picked up right where they left off.
's second-period goal gave Jaroslav Halak
all the support he needed as the Blues blanked the Los Angeles Kings
1-0 on Friday night at Scottrade Center. Halak stopped 22 shots for his 21st career shutout, helping the Blues (30-13-7) jump over Nashville into fourth place in the West by one point. The teams meet in Music City on Saturday night.
The Blues continued their home dominance, winning an NHL-best 22nd game at Scottrade Center (22-3-4). They are 14-0-3 in their last 17 games on home ice. It's also their NHL-leading 10th shutout of the season.
The Kings (25-17-10), playing the opener of a six-game road trip, were blanked for the sixth time this season despite a 32-save performance by Jonathan Quick
Langenbrunner's fourth goal of the season came off a strong play by Matt D'Agostini
, who kept his feet moving and was able to create a 2-on-1 after chipping a puck past Drew Doughty
along the right boards. D'Agostini found Langenbrunner in the high slot for a one-timer past Quick 8:38 into the second period that turned into his 57th game-winning goal.
Halak, who is 12-1-3 in his last 16 starts, preserved the lead with two spectacular stops with his left pad before intermission. First, he robbed the Kings' Dustin Brown
at the right post by extending the left pad on a Kings power play with 5:29 left in the second. He also stretched to stop Colin Fraser
's turnaround backhand attempt with 1:16 left in the period.
Halak's best save came off the stick of Justin Williams
, who was parked at the right post and was denied by the right pad of Halak with 5:10 to play to preserve the 1-0 lead. Williams was looking for a point in his 10th straight game.
The Kings had a 5-1 shot advantage early in the game as the Blues needed some time to find their legs. Once they did, they outshot L.A. 11-1 the rest of the first and had the best scoring opportunities.
hit the left post after beating Quick with a shot with 9:42 left in the period. Langenbrunner had a terrific chance late to get the first goal but fired his shot wide from the slot after another turnover.