Both the Anaheim Ducks and the St. Louis Blues have had their issues with injuries this season. Ryan Kesler has missed 30 games. Cam Fowler has missed 12. Sami Vatanen has missed 9. Ryan Miller has missed 9. Ryan Getzlaf has missed 24. Corey Perry was injured in the Ducks’ win over the Carolina Hurricanes and will miss tonight.
For the Blues, Patrik Berglund has missed 24 (he’s back!). Robby Fabbri has missed 30 and will miss all season. Zach Sanford has missed 30 and will be gone through probably March at the soonest. Jay Bouwmeester has missed 21 but will be back tonight. Alex Steen missed six games to start the season. Alex Pietrangelo has missed the last two and is currently on the IR. Jaden Schwartz is out for six weeks.
This is a mess, but if you look at the two teams’ records, one team has handled it better than the other. The Blues are 21-9-2 on the season. The Ducks are 13-11-7. The question here that matters for Blues fans is this: how much longer can they keep this up? When do they get tired? Will Schwartz’s injury start another slump? Tuesday night’s 3-0 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning was a flat affair. Is this a sign of things to come?
Worry is perfunctory if you’re a fan of the St. Louis Blues. Fatalism has been a way of life for fifty years. There’re reasons, however, to think that things could be different this year - 44 of them, to be exact. The Blues lead the Western Conference with 44 points and sit second in the NHL. Alex Pietrangelo and Carter Hutton are back skating, which should mitigate some concern as well.
The Blues lost 3-2 to the Ducks in Anaheim last month, but have steadily gotten better against a team that they have traditionally had issues with. They’re 5-3-1 in their last nine games against the Ducks and 10-3-2 in their last 15 at home against them.