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Rangers At Blues Morning Open Thread: Short-Handed Blues Face Banged Up Rangers

Neither team is at full strength, and both lost badly in their last outings.

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The Blues, despite his return to practice, will be short Alex Pietrangelo until at least one of the two games this weekend. Ken HItchcock's evaluation is this:

"He just looks normal," Hitchcock said. "This is really the first full practice for him. He’ll get another good one tomorrow, he’s going to get another good one on Friday and then we’ll make an evaluation for Saturday afternoon."

So, that marks Petro off of the list again. Alexander Steen, of course, will be out for three and a half more weeks, minimum. Brian Elliott is out. Ryan Reaves, well, he's suspended.

Will we see a sharper Blues team tonight than we saw Monday evening? By default, I think that answer is "yes," because nothing can be much worse than the way that the Blues began their 6-3 loss to the Sharks. Then again, 6-3 was also the score in the loss to the Rangers earlier this season.

This is your morning open thread. Check back later on for a Lighting The Lamp from Rick, your game preview, and later on the GDT. While you're waiting, head over to Blueshirt Banter and see what fans of one of the East's slumping best have to say about tonight's game.