Blues captain Alex Pietrangelo (27) scrums around the goal crease with Predators forward Colton Sissons (10). (Photo courtesy: Danny Murphy, Getty Images)
11/25: Blues/Predators, 7pm CT, Bridgestone Arena – FSMW, ESPN 101.1
Nashville, TN – The St. Louis Blues (14-5-5) are out for revenge in Music City in the second half of a home-at-home against the Nashville Predators (10-9-3). The Blues were a debacle in their own end on Saturday against the Preds, allowing 3 goals in the first and losing 4-2.
“They got a couple bounces early,” Blues forward Brayden Schenn said. “But even saying that, that’s not our brand of hockey. Turn over the puck too much, we sat back, didn’t take care of the puck and caused them to get good chances and break out with the puck. Our turnovers led to their offense and we have to clean it up for the next game.”
Klim Kostin grabbed the first goal of his career in that loss, and Jaden Schwartz was (eventually) credited with what we all thought was Alex Pietrangelo’s 100th goal. “No words to explain the feeling,” Kostin told the Post-Dispatch. “(I’ve been dreaming of this) from three years old. When I first step on ice.”
The Blues and Preds finish off their first home-at-home of the season tonight in Nashville at 7pm. They will play another home-at-home series in mid-February.
The talk of the Blues over the weekend after that loss was Robert Bortuzzo. As Robert laid a cross-check to Victor Arvidsson and got called on it, Bortuzzo laid out another cheap shot on Arvidsson that sent him into the crossbar, which put him out the rest of the game. The next day, news broke that Bortuzzo was suspended four games and Victor Arvidsson is out four to six weeks with a lower body injury. Predators head coach Peter Laviolette called it “dirty”, as did NHL player safety, and Carl Gunnarsson will likely be the replacement for the next four games.
The suspension is definitely justified, and it’s honestly a break for Bortuzzo he wasn’t suspended more. Bortuzzo is a repeat offender with Player Safety (most recently the elbow on Michael Kempny in 2018), and this was a downright nasty hit. Bortuzzo has a problem with retaliating on bad/missed calls by taking it into his own gloves, and thankfully the depth of the Blues will cover for his recklessness. However, Bortuzzo’s rather foolish penalties and suspensions are still worrisome, especially for coaches and teammates.
Derrick Pouliot and Nathan Walker have been called up from the AHL in the absence of Troy Brouwer (Visa issues). Pouliot has 14 assists and 22 points in 20 games; Walker has 12 goals and 22 points.
The Blues and Preds drop the puck at Bridgestone Arena tonight at 8pm ET. To follow broadcasts of tonight’s game, head to:
STL: FSMW, ESPN 101.1, Fox Sports GO, NHL.com
NSH: FSTN, WPRT 103.1, Fox Sports GO, NHL.com
For local Blues stories, recaps, insights and more, visit bluesrants.com!