Blues-Maple Leafs Preview
GAME: St. Louis Blues (15-6-2-1) at Toronto Maple Leafs (15-6-5-2).
TIME: Tuesday, 7:30 p.m. EST.
With an eight-game winning streak, the Toronto Maple Leafs have moved to the
top of the Northeast Division. They'll look to keep rolling when they face the
St. Louis Blues in a matchup of two of the NHL's top teams.
The Leafs continued to erase the memory of a 1-2-2 start with a 5-2 victory
over Detroit on Saturday. That followed a 6-0 rout of Boston, the second-place
team in the Northeast, on Thursday.
Gary Roberts and Mats Sundin each had a goal and an assist against the Red
Wings as the Maple Leafs knocked off another of the NHL's top clubs to extend
Toronto's win streak includes two victories over Vancouver and one against
Ottawa, two of the best teams in the NHL. Detroit entered the game tied for the
Western Conference lead with the Canucks.
"We've played quality opponents. I'm excited with how we're playing,"
Sundin said. "We want to be a top team in this league. I think we have the
players to be a top team."
Toronto ended Detroit's five-game unbeaten streak in a game that had just
"This is a good team. We can play with the good teams and we really believe
that now," coach Pat Quinn said.
The Leafs haven't lost at home since Nov. 1, a 7-1 rout at the hands of the
Philadelphia Flyers. Since that defeat, Toronto is 11-2-3-1.
Roberts returned to the lineup Saturday after missing two games with a
strained hip muscle.
Toronto's victory over Detroit helped St. Louis, which is battling the Wings
for first place in the Central Division. The Blues have also been off since
Saturday, when they beat Nashville 4-1 to push their unbeaten streak to three
Mark Rycroft had two goals as the Blues snapped the Predators' six-game
"We really don't look at the standings much now," Blues forward Dallas
Drake said. "You look more at the standings at the end of the year when you're
fighting for a playoff spot."
The Blues' Chris Osgood had to make only 15 saves against Nashville as St.
Louis put together another strong defensive effort. The Blues' 53 goals allowed
are the fewest in the Western Conference.
In its last 10 games, St. Louis has killed 34 of 36 power-play chances.
Blues defenseman Barret Jackman will be out three to five weeks with a
shoulder strain. Jackman hurt his shoulder in the win over Boston.
Tuesday's game will be the only regular season meeting between St. Louis and