The postseason match-ups are almost entirely set, and after solidifying third place in the Central Division, the Blues are looking for an easy, injury-free win over the dilapidated Avalanche. Defenseman Chris Butler has been called up on an ‘emergency’ basis and will start tonight against the Avalanche. It is probably safe to assume he will replace Piertrangelo on the blueline in the interests of avoiding an injury to a cornerstone player during a meaningless regular season game. There’s no word (yet) on whether or not Tarasenko will also sit this game out as well (which seems likely), but Blues fans will get their first look at KHL-runaway Vladimir Sobotka tonight.
I'd look for the #stlblues to rest Pietrangelo and/or Bouwmeester tomorrow, maybe Parayko a candidate. Steen, Schwartz, Tarasenko among FWDs— Lou Korac (@lkorac10) April 9, 2017
The hapless Avalanche have gone 2-8 over their last 10 games, and they are probably eager to put this nasty season behind them just as quickly as they possibly can. Rumors continue to swirl around the Colorado roster; many analysts had Duchene moving over the trade deadline to Ottawa, and while this deal never materialized, the only asset in the organization that could be completely off limits is promising youngster Mikko Rantanen. It’s not all doom and gloom with the Avs, however; Tyson Jost’s grandfather has become the darling of the internet with his tearful reactions to both his grandson’s first NHL game, and first NHL goal (I’M NOT CRYING IT’S JUST FUCKING DUSTY IN HERE).
Carter Hutton picked up a 34-save win against Carolina last night, and Jake Allen will get the start tonight. Jake’s looking to close out the season with his 33rd win. While the Blues have lucked out with such a cakewalk schedule in the closing weeks of the season, Allen needs to go into the postseason with a healthy dose of confidence and momentum. The defense in front of Jake tonight - sans Piertrangelo, Bouwmeester, or even Parayko - will likely not be as robust as usual and he will probably see a healthy number of shots from the Avalanche.