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Round 2
Round 3
Stanley Cup Final

Halak ruled out for Game 3

By Eric Gilmore - NHL.com Correspondent

SAN JOSESt. Louis Blues coach Ken Hitchcock ruled out injured goaltender Jaroslav Halak for Game 3 Monday night of their Western Conference Quarterfinals series against the San Jose Sharks at HP Pavilion.


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Brian Elliott will start in goal for the Blues, Hitchcock said Sunday at HP Pavilion. Jake Allen, who was recalled late Saturday from Peoria of the American Hockey League, will serve as Elliott's backup.

Halak suffered a lower-body injury early in the second period of the Blues' 3-0 win against San Jose on Saturday night when St. Louis defenseman Barret Jackman collided with him near the crease. Elliott took over and completed the shutout.

"We're lucky because we've been a two-man rotation since Day 1 here," Hitchcock said. "You don't expect something like this to happen but it does. We're lucky we're in the situation we're in. We have two good goalies, a 1 and a 1A literally. Both guys have played in pretty much every building and both guys have played well in every building. For us, we don't miss a beat."

Elliott had nine shutouts and Halak six during the regular season. Each goaltender went 2-0 against the Sharks with one shutout. For the season, Elliott had a 1.56 goals against average and .940 save percentage. Halak posted a 1.97 goals against average and .926 save percentage.

Hitchcock said trainers will "re-evaluate" Halak on Tuesday. Game 4 is scheduled for Thursday at HP Pavilion. He started the first two games of the series, taking a 3-2 loss in double overtime in Game 1.

"Both guys have played well this series," Hitchcock said. "We're going to need them. Obviously right now Brian is going to have to be our best player tomorrow and take this series back and get home-ice advantage back again. That's what it has to be on the road. Your goalie has to be your best player. I thought [Antti] Niemi was their best player in Game 1 and obviously the pair was our best players in Game 2."

It's hard to walk into that locker room and look those guys in the eye when they've played -- clearly, that was our best game we've played in the series -- and I thought we deserved a better fate tonight.

— Tampa Bay Lightning coach Jon Cooper on his team's 3-2 loss to the Canadiens in Game 3 on Sunday