St. Louis
Blues
39-30-11-2
Anaheim
Ducks
29-35-10-8
OT
31 SOG
29 SOG
1st2nd3rdOTT
STL
ANA
game preview

St. Louis Blues vs. Anaheim Ducks

Wednesday, 03.17.2004 / 4:30 PM

Associated Press

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St. Louis Blues vs. Anaheim Ducks
St. Louis Blues vs. Anaheim Ducks
Blues-Mighty Ducks Preview

GAME: St. Louis Blues (33-27-10-2) at Anaheim Mighty Ducks (26-30-9-8).

TIME: Wednesday, 10:30 p.m. EST.

Back in a tie for seventh place in the Western Conference, the St. Louis Blues hope to continue their climb up the standings when they visit the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.

The Blues have just one loss in their last seven games (5-1-1), and are coming off a crucial 4-3 win over the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday.

The win left the Blues and Nashville Predators tied at 80 points for the seventh and eighth playoff spots, knocking the Kings into ninth. The Blues, who have 10 games remaining, are four points behind the sixth-place Flames in the West.

Veteran Keith Tkachuk has sparked the Blues' resurgence. The 31-year-old winger has recorded a point in six of his last seven games, including his 30th goal of the season against the Kings on Tuesday.

The Blues won despite playing for the first time this season without four-time All-Star defenseman Chris Pronger, who served a league-imposed one-game suspension. Pronger was the only player to appear in each of St. Louis' first 72 games, after missing all but five games last season because of injuries.

In Tuesday's win, Chris Osgood made 31 saves for his 300th NHL victory and Petr Cajanek had an empty-net goal and two assists.

Anaheim snapped its four-game losing streak with a 3-2 win in overtime over the Phoenix Coyotes on Tuesday. Garrett Burnett and Cam Severson scored for the Ducks, and Ilja Bryzgalov made 26 saves in his first NHL start.

"NHL games and AHL games are a bit different," Bryzgalov said. "Here you need a little bit more concentration."

The Ducks had been outscored 15-5 during the losing streak, their longest skid since opening the season with five losses.

Now 11 points behind the Blues and Predators for the final playoff spots, the Ducks on the verge of becoming the first team since 1993 to fail to make the postseason after advancing to the Stanley Cup finals the previous year.

STANDINGS: Blues - 80 points, 3rd place, 16 PB, Central Division. Mighty Ducks - 69 points, 4th place, 19 PB, Pacific Division.

TEAM LEADERS: Blues - Tkachuk, 30 goals and 66 points; Doug Weight, 46 assists; Mike Danton, 141 PIM. Mighty Ducks - Fedorov, 26 goals, 31 assists and 57 points; Burnett, 148 PIM.

SPECIAL TEAMS (through March 15): Blues - Power play: 17.7 percent (55 for 310), 9th in NHL. Penalty killing: 84.5 percent (288 for 341), 12th. Mighty Ducks - Power play: 16.5 percent (46 for 278), 13th. Penalty killing: 84.5 percent (261 for 309), 11th.

GOALTENDERS: Blues - Osgood (26-23-8, 2 SO, 2.29 GAA); Reinhard Divis (4-3-1, 0, 3.09). Mighty Ducks - Jean-Sebastien Giguere (15-28-5, 3, 2.62); Martin Gerber (10-10-4, 2, 2.27; Ilya Bryzgalov 1-0-0, 0, 2.00)

SEASON SERIES: tied, 1-1.

LAST MEETING: Nov. 16; Mighty Ducks, 4-3. At Anaheim, Steve Rucchin scored in the first period for his 400th NHL point, then got the go-ahead tally on the power play early in the third.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Blues - 14-17-3-2 on the road; Mighty Ducks - 17-9-6-4 at home.


Associated Press
2003-2004 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Mar 25 '04ANA 2 at STL 3J. Mayers
Mar 17 '04STL 1 at ANA 1 - OTM. Skoula
Nov 16 '03STL 3 at ANA 4S. Rucchin
Nov 04 '03ANA 1 at STL 2 - OTK. Tkachuk
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%

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