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Preview: Blues vs. Kings

by Chris Pinkert / St. Louis Blues

BLUES VS. KINGS

When: Saturday, Jan. 23 at 7 p.m.
Where: Enterprise Center
Watch: FOX Sports Midwest, FOX Sports GO
Listen: 101 ESPN, NHL App

Season Series presented by Bayer

PROJECTED LINEUP

BLUES The St. Louis Blues are 2-1-1 to start the season, and they're not all that happy about it.

"I don't think we're satisfied with anything other than being 4-0 right now," Zach Sanford said. "We've got a lot of really skilled guys, we've won before and I think we have a really solid team… We still have a lot of work to do, a lot of games to be played."

Regardless of the winning record, the Blues' special teams are under scrutiny through four games.

The team is still looking for its first power-play goal. And despite the penalty kill being perfect in the last game, Blues Head Coach Craig Berube still was unhappy that his team gave the San Jose Sharks seven power plays - including two 5-on-3s - in a 2-1 shootout loss Wednesday.

"We can't go to the box that much. It's really hard on people, it's hard on our team," Berube said. "[We] can't get to our game because of it. I don't know where we're at in the League penalty-wise, but [we] might be leading the League."

Video: Clifford and Faulk ahead of meeting with the Kings

KINGS The Los Angeles Kings are coming off their first win of the season on Thursday - a 4-2 victory against the Colorado Avalanche.

Los Angeles is 1-1-2 through four games this season.

The Kings finished seventh in the Pacific Division last season with a 29-35-6 record (64 points), and their rebuild is ongoing under General Manager Rob Blake. The club added a big piece to the organization by selecting Quinton Byfield with the second overall pick in the 2020 NHL Draft. Byfield, a 6-foot-4, 215-pound center that posted 143 points in 109 career OHL games, could make his NHL debut this season. One other key addition over the offseason is defenseman Olli Maata, who joins the team after spending last season in Chicago.

Jeff Carter, Dustin Brown, Anze Kopitar, Drew Doughty and Jonathan Quick makeup the veteran group that keeps the Kings from being a team to sleep on.

"They're playing better, they're playing hard, they're aggressive," Berube said of the Kings. "It's going to be a hard game. They're an up-and-coming team, they still have some very good players from the old Stanley Cup teams. It will be a hard game. Every game is hard."


BLUE NOTES

The Blues have won three straight games against the Kings, outscoring them 13-3… The Blues have scored five power-play goals on their last six opportunities against the Kings… Jordan Binnington is 2-1-0 with a 2.36 goals-against average and a .926 save-percentage against Los Angeles… Mike Hoffman has 10 points (five goals, five assists) in 12 career games against the Kings… Marco Scandella returned to practice Friday and will be back in the lineup after being a last-minute scratch Wednesday due to an upper-body injury.

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