AVALANCHE (3-4-4) at BLUES (5-3-1)
TV: ALT2, FS-MW
Season series: The St. Louis Blues won three of four games against the Colorado Avalanche last season, but the Avalanche have the most recent victory, winning 4-0 on April 5. Paul Stastny, now a member of the Blues, had one goal and two assists and Semyon Varlamov stopped 31 shots.
Avalanche team scope: The Avalanche got two points from five different players, including two goals from Nathan MacKinnon, in a 5-0 victory against the New York Islanders on Thursday. Varlamov stopped 40 shots for his 14th career shutout and 10th with the Avalanche. Cody McLeod and Erik Johnson each had one goal and one assist, and Matt Duchene and Maxime Talbot each had two assists. The goals were MacKinnon's first and second of the season. "It's nice," MacKinnon said. "I figured it would come sooner or later. Obviously a little later than I wanted but it's all in the past now. It was a huge win at home." After the game in St. Louis, Colorado will return to Pepsi Center for a three-game homestand that starts Sunday against the Anaheim Ducks.
Blues team scope: Behind Jake Allen's 24-save shutout and goals by Alexander Steen and Ryan Reaves, the Blues defeated the Ducks 2-0 despite not having David Backes (concussion), T.J. Oshie (concussion), Stastny (shoulder) and Joakim Lindstrom (illness). Backes passed the concussion protocol and was on the ice for an optional practice Friday but he is questionable for the game Saturday. "We'll evaluate it in the morning," Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said of Backes. "He got through [Friday], so we'll see how he feels [Saturday] morning and make the decision. It's a fluid situation with him. Oshie's not going to play, obviously Stastny's not going to play and two or three guys that went down [Thursday], we'll get you a better evaluation [Saturday] morning on the way they feel [from the bacterial infection]."