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As expected, the Dallas Stars and Anaheim Ducks played a physical and grinding game on Friday night, however the result did not land in our favor. The Ducks held a 1-0 lead for the majority of regulation before Dallas notched the tying goal late in the third period and sent the game to extra time. Dallas was not able to complete the comeback and eventually fell to the Ducks 2-1 in a shootout. Like most Western Conference games, this one could have gone either way and was a fight to the very end, and unfortunately we were on the wrong end of this one. We will move on to the only game on tonight’s schedule featuring the St. Louis Blues and the New York Rangers.
St. Louis Blues @ New York Rangers
My Pick – BLUES (-125)
The St. Louis Blues and the New York Rangers will cap their season series tonight from Madison Square Garden as St. Louis looks to avenge a 3-2 season-opening loss to the Rangers on October 9th. St. Louis has been playing typical Blues hockey of late as they come into this matchup riding a four-game win streak; a streak they will look to keep going as the embark on a mini two-game road trip that will end in New Jersey on Tuesday night. St. Louis is getting outstanding contributions from their young guns as Vladimir Tarasenko has been lights out for the Blues so far this season as the Sophomore forward has tallied six goals and 11 points to pace the Blues in both categories. Jaden Schwartz and Jori Lehtara have also been key contributors to a Blues team that likely expected veterans such as David Backes, Paul Stastny, Alex Steen and T.J. Oshie to shoulder much of the load. That is what makes this team so scary; the veterans that have guided this team to the top of the Western Conference for the last several seasons have yet to break out, and unfortunately for everyone else the breakout is inevitable. This deep Blues team will be looking to take advantage of a banged-up Rangers squad. New York was already without their top Centre in Derek Stepan and veteran defenceman Dan Boyle, now the Rangers will play the next 3-4 weeks without their Captain and top defenceman Ryan McDonagh as he injured his shoulder over the weekend. Another d-man, Kevin Kline, also left Saturday’s loss to the Jets with an injury. Furthermore, back up goalie Cam Talbot will get the nod for the Rangers tonight to give Henrik Lundqvist a blow after starting nine of the first 11 games the Rangers have played. The back-end for the Rangers is clearly depleted and they are already giving up 3 goals per game. On the contrary, the Blues give up just 1.9 goals per game and tonight’s start Brian Elliott has a 1.96 goals against average on the season. Take the Rangers tonight to extend their winning streak to five at the expense of an injury-ravaged Rangers squad.