Wednesday night, the Anaheim Ducks lost in regulation for the first time in more than a month.
The team that struggled out of the gate is gone, turning into their usual playoff-contender selves. They have just two fewer wins than the Blues do, and the two teams have split their last two meetings (Anaheim won 4-3 in a shootout on January 8th; the Blues won 2-1 back on October 29th). These are never easy games for either team. Tonight's game may not be as heated (and hopefully not as poorly officiated) as Thursday night's win over the Chicago Blackhawks, but you can bet it'll be physical and a challenge.
This game is going to be close. Don't believe me? Look at the teams' stats:
This is a must-win game for St. Louis. One point is keeping them away from advancing past either the Blackhawks or Dallas Stars, who are tied for first in the division and who play each other tonight. To keep pace, the Blues need two points. They've showed themselves capable of snagging two, but they've been doing so in dramatic fashion, incapable of maintaining a one-goal lead when the clock's winding down.
In their last 12 games against the Ducks at Scottrade, the Blues are an impressive 8-2-2. Jake Allen's been a good part of this. He's 3-0-0 with a 0.87 GAA, a .966 SV% and 1 SO in his career against the Ducks, and is going for win number 23 tonight.