It’s a big night in San Jose, as the team that ended the Sharks’ chance at a second Stanley Cup Final appearance makes their way into SAP Center for the first time this season. The St. Louis Blues seem no worse for the wear and have held steady atop the ever-changing Western Conference.
After losing star forward Vladimir Tarasenko long-term to a shoulder injury, the Blues have doubled down on playing a trap style that seems to be haunting much of the West. Their 22 wins tie the Colorado Avalanche, but their six overtime losses are tied for the most in the West with three other teams. In other words: the trap style has been effect in earning the Blues standing points, even if it results in a boring product on the ice.
The Sharks will have to counter with speed and skill and unfortunately the lineup they’ll be icing tonight might not be ideal for either. Newcomer Stefan Noesen will be making his Sharks debut on the fourth line after being picked up off waivers from the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday. Joel Kellman will also be debuting on that line, as Bob Boughner continues rotating a cast of rookies into the lineup. Finally, Mario Ferraro is still out with an upper body injury, so Jacob Middleton will be slotting into the third defensive pairing alongside Tim Heed.
Expected Scratches: Noah Gregor, Antti Suomela
Injured Reserve: Dalton Prout (upper body), Radim Simek (knee), Mario Ferraro (upper body)
Blues (via NHL.com)
Jaden Schwartz — Brayden Schenn — Jordan Kyrou
Oskar Sundqvist — Ryan O’Reilly — David Perron
Alexander Steen — Robert Thomas — Tyler Bozak
MacKenzie MacEachern — Jacob de la Rose — Ivan Barbashev
Justin Faulk — Alex Pietrangelo
Jay Bouwmeester — Colton Parayko
Vince Dunn — Robert Bortuzzo
Expected Scratches: Niko Mikkola, Troy Brouwer, Zach Sanford
Injured Reserve: Vladimir Tarasenko (shoulder), Sammy Blais (wrist), Erik Foley (concussion), Carl Gunnarsson (upper body)
Where to Watch
Puck drop from SAP Center will be at 7:30 PT/10:30 ET. Tonight’s broadcast will be available on NBC Sports California in the Bay Area and on Fox Sports Midwest for the visitors’ market. Streaming will be available on NHLtv. The radio call will be on 98.5 KFOX or available to stream through the Sharks + SAP Center app.