NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Sunday, November 7th (All times eastern)
St. Louis Blues (8-1-2) at New York Rangers (7-5-1), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Outstanding goaltender by Jaroslav Halak has the Blues on the verge of their longest winning streak since 2002. St. Louis seeks a seventh consecutive victory this evening as it visits the New York Rangers and Madison Square Garden.
Halak has started all six games of St. Louis' current win streak, posting a 0.97 goals-against average and three shutouts. Picked up in a trade with Montreal this offseason, the 25-year-old is 8-1-1 with a 1.46 GAA.
Coming off a whitewashing of the Sharks on Thursday, Halak kept the Boston Bruins off the board until three minutes left in the third period, then stopped two of three skaters in a shootout for a 2-1 triumph.
"I was just trying to stop the puck and luckily for me, the first and third shooters hit the post," said Halak, who saw his shutout streak end at 150 minutes and three seconds in the third period. "I'll take it. Every time it stays out, it is good for the team."
Vladimir Sobotka had St. Louis' goal in regulation and both T.J. Oshie and Brad Boyes scored in the shootout as the Blues won six straight for the first time since Dec. 6-18, 2003. They haven't posted seven straight victories since an eight-game burst from Oct. 15-Nov. 5, 2002.
Forward David Perron missed the game after getting hit in the head by San Jose's Joe Thornton on Thursday. Perron finished that game versus the Sharks and scored a goal, but his status for tonight is uncertain. Thornton was suspended two games for the hit.
Halak is 5-3-0 with a 2.99 GAA in his career versus the Rangers, who begin a four-game homestand tonight looking for a fourth victory in five games.
After suffering a 4-1 setback in Philadelphia on Thursday, New York visited New Jersey the following night and bounced back with a solid 3-0 victory. Brandon Dubinsky had two goals to give him five tallies in three games, while Henrik Lundqvist made 33 saves for his second shutout of the season and 26th of his career.
"He's the rock of our team, no doubt about it," Dubinsky, who has 10 points in his last eight games, said about Lundqvist. "He's the guy that we lean on and sometimes we lean on too much. He showed why he's the best in the league again tonight. It was a big win for our team."
Brian Boyle scored the other goal and Artem Anisimov notched two assists for the Rangers, who have won six of their last nine and are 2-3-1 at home this season.
New York picked up the victory without Ryan Callahan, who is second on the club with 13 points, after the forward was scratched due to soreness sustained when he crashed face-first into the boards on Thursday. He is questionable to return tonight.
The Rangers are already playing without Marian Gaborik (shoulder), Chris Drury (broken finger) and Vinny Prospal (knee).
The Blues won both of their games versus the Rangers last year, including a 4-3 triumph in New York on March 18. St. Louis has won three straight overall against the Blueshirts and five of its last six at Madison Square Garden.
Lundqvist has lost both of his career starts against the Blues, allowing six goals on 49 shots, while Dubinsky has just one assist in three games.
11/07 10:30:38 ET