BLUES (21-8-2) at KINGS (15-11-6)
TV: FS-MW, FS-W
Season series: The St. Louis Blues rallied from a 2-0 deficit, including four third-period goals, to defeat the Los Angeles Kings 5-2 on Tuesday. Vladimir Tarasenko's second hat trick of the season, and of his NHL career, sparked the Blues, who scored three goals in a 2:30 span. In the first game this season, Kings goalie Jonathan Quick made 43 saves for the shutout and Jeff Carter scored in a shootout.
Blues team scope: Tarasenko had his second four-point game in the victory Tuesday. Goals by Jaden Schwartz, Tarasenko and Alexander Steen helped the Blues erase a one-goal deficit in the final 10 minutes.
"When we play reckless, we're a better team," coach Ken Hitchcock said Wednesday. "We don't play well when we play conservative or careful. We need to play reckless to be effective."
Forward T.J. Oshie, who missed the game Tuesday because of a death in the family, will join the team in Los Angeles in time to play Thursday. Defenseman Carl Gunnarsson accompanied the Blues on their three-game trip but is not ready to return to the lineup conditioning-wise. He's medically cleared to resume activities after sustaining a concussion Dec. 6.
Goalie Martin Brodeur, who has not played since a 4-2 victory on Dec. 8 against the Florida Panthers, will start.
Kings team scope: The defending champs limp home to begin a four-game homestand after a 1-3-1 trip. Forward Marian Gaborik scored twice as the Kings jumped out to a lead Tuesday, but it fell apart quickly in the third period.
"Going into [Tuesday] night, we wanted to come back with being .500, so that was disappointing last night," coach Darryl Sutter told reporters after practice Wednesday. Sutter wasn't so much disappointed in the team game, but more so at Quick, who allowed four goals on 22 shots, including three on seven shots in the third.
"We've got to get a save in there somewhere. It's frustrating," Sutter said after the game.
Quick is expected to start Thursday.