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Penguins at Blues preview

Malkin has seven points in past two games for Pittsburgh; St. Louis eyes third straight win

by Louie Korac / Independent Correspondent

PENGUINS (14-8-4) at BLUES (16-5-6)



The Game

The St. Louis Blues will try for their third straight win when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins at Enterprise Center on Saturday.

The Blues wrapped up a three-game road trip 2-0-1 with a 3-1 win at the Dallas Stars on Friday. 

The Penguins, who had their six-game point streak (4-0-2) end with a 5-2 loss at the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday, will be without forward Bryan Rust for a second straight game. 

Rust, who is tied for third on the Penguins with 17 points (nine goals, eight assists) in 14 games, was sent to Pittsburgh to be evaluated. He did not play Friday after falling into the boards during the morning skate. 


Players to watch

Penguins center Evgeni Malkin has seven points (two goals, five assists) in the past two games and 14 points (four goals, 10 assists) in his past seven games.

Blues forward David Perron, who had two assists Friday, has seven points (three goals, four assists) in a six-game point streak.


They said it

"It's tough to come back every single game. We have to give them credit, but we have to be better as a team and try to find a way to play better even when we don't have our best game." -- Penguins forward Patric Hornqvist after a 5-2 loss against the Columbus Blue Jackets Friday

"It was an excellent game by us here [Friday], coming in here. They've been really on a roll here the last 10, 11 games. We had a real good effort from everybody." -- Blues coach Craig Berube after a 3-1 win against the Dallas Stars Friday


Penguins projected lineup

Jake Guentzel -- Evgeni Malkin -- Dominik Simon

Dominik Kahun -- Jared McCann -- Patric Hornqvist

Zach Aston-Reese -- Teddy Blueger -- Brandon Tanev

Alex Galchenyuk -- Sam Lafferty -- Joseph Blandisi

Brian Dumoulin -- Kris Letang

Jack Johnson -- John Marino

Marcus Pettersson -- Zach Trotman

Matt Murray

Tristan Jarry

Scratched: Chad Ruhwedel, Juuso Riikola

Injured: Sidney Crosby (core muscle), Nick Bjugstad (lower body), Justin Schultz (lower body), Bryan Rust (lower body)


Blues projected lineup

Jaden Schwartz -- Brayden Schenn -- Robert Thomas

Zach Sanford -- Ryan O'Reilly -- David Perron

Ivan Barbashev -- Tyler Bozak -- Troy Brouwer

Mackenzie MacEachern -- Jacob de la Rose -- Nathan Walker

Vince Dunn -- Alex Pietrangelo

Jay Bouwmeester -- Colton Parayko

Derrick Pouliot -- Justin Faulk

Jordan Binnington

Jake Allen

Scratched: Austin Poganski

Injured: Vladimir Tarasenko (shoulder), Alexander Steen (ankle), Sammy Blais (wrist), Oskar Sundqvist (lower body), Carl Gunnarsson (illness)

Suspended: Robert Bortuzzo


Status report

Neither team held a morning skate. ... Blandisi, recalled from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League on Friday after Rust's injury, could play. ... Gunnarsson could play after he missed the game Friday. ... Murray and Binnington are the expected starters after Jarry and Allen started Friday.


Stat pack

Guentzel has 13 points (seven goals, six assists) in a seven-game point streak; he extended it with a goal and an assist Friday. ... The Penguins are 0-2-2 their past four road games, 1-3-2 the past six. ... Schenn extended his point streak to six games Friday (two goals, four assists). ... O'Reilly has four points (one goal, three assists) in a three-game point streak.

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