After a disheartening loss, complete with a blown three-goal lead, Anaheim seeks to rekindle some offensive magic in their last game of this extended road trip. Even though they managed a season-best three goals in the first period in Dallas, the Ducks could not manage to hang onto the lead long enough to secure the two standing points and their second win of the regular season.
Ducks: Tuesday, 10/27 at Dallas. "Gamer: Ducks Gas Out, Allow Dallas to Rally in 4-3 Loss"
Blues: Tuesday, 10/27 vs. Tampa Bay. "Recap: Just the Tip, Tampa"
Anaheim will be without their captain for the second consecutive game, as Ryan Getzlaf returned home for an appendectomy. The nod for starting goaltender is expected to go in favor of Frederik Andersen, who has a disappointing 0-4-2 record despite a superior goals against average and save percentage (2.05 and .931 respectively) compared to Anton Khudobin's statistics.
Regardless of the high praises Anaheim received for its offseason changes, and even more despite the expectations for this team coming into this season, the Ducks have had a completely unlucky start with the vast majority of their games thus far being against the impressive Central Division teams.
All around the Ducks have had strong games, or moreover glimpses of strong moments, however they do not have many wins or standings points to show for it. While attempting to maintain at least some glimmer of optimism, I feel like so many games come down to one bounce; as we all know, hockey is a game of inches. The minute those bounces start going in favor of Anaheim, I do not doubt that there will be a fantastic snowball effect and all of a sudden we are back coasting smoothly like seasons past.
That being said, the team has so much left to prove, and there are plenty of aspects of the game that need improving and fine-tuning.
With a roster riddled with injuries including those to Jaden Schwartz, Paul Stastny, Patrik Berglund, and a still-recovering Kevin Shattenkirk, St Louis has brought in veterans Dainius Zubrus and Martin Havlat on professional tryout contracts lasting 10 days. If these experienced skaters can fill the large void left by players who are recovering has yet to be determined, however the Blues seem to be doing decently despite circumstances.
At home, the Blues have not lost in regulation this season with a standing record of 2-0-1, and most recently shutout the offensive stalwart Tampa Bay Lightning.
All in all, this team has proven that they are a force to be reckoned with, posting the third most shots per games played in the NHL with an average of 32.8 shots per game. The Blues tend to fall more toward the middle of the pack in categories involving penalty killing and power plays, however they still are sitting pretty, chilling as the fourth best team in league standings.
Two hours before face off we'll have the game thread up, featuring the full Stat Pack, likely with expected lines, and of course your Numbers For Nerds.