The streaking St. Louis Blues will try to extend their offensive surge when they host the Boston Bruins on Tuesday.
The Blues (46-20-10, 102 points) have scored four or more goals in their last 12 games — the longest such stretch in the NHL since the 1992-93 season, when Pittsburgh scored four or more goals in 15 straight games.
St. Louis is 11-0-1 during this span with nine consecutive victories, including a 4-2 win at Boston last Tuesday. The Blues are coming off an 8-3 victory in Nashville on Sunday that kept them one point ahead of Minnesota for second place in the Central Division.
“We’ve been saying it all year, we all know that we have a really deep, offensive group,” said Blues forward Jordan Kyrou, who scored twice against the Predators. “It’s not that surprising.”
The Bruins (46-24-5, 97 points) snapped a three-game losing streak by beating Pittsburgh 2-1 on Saturday to clinch a playoff spot.
“We have a standard here,” Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said. “We’re not gonna go out and celebrate that we made the playoffs, but it’s still an accomplishment you should be proud of.”
The Bruins can finish no worse than fourth in the Atlantic Division. They are three points behind third-place Tampa Bay.
“We’re in now, and we can start building our game for the playoffs — which I think we’ve been doing for the last few months,” Cassidy said.
The Blues are clicking on all offensive cylinders, but the line of Robert Thomas centering Pavel Buchnevich and Vladimir Tarasenko has been especially dangerous.
Thomas has a 13-game point streak with six goals and 19 assists. Buchnevich has a 10-game streak (18 points; six goals, 12 assists) and Tarasenko has scored goals in five straight games (eight goals, six assists).
“I’m very happy with the team, the way they’re performing,” Blues coach Craig Berube said. “They are playing for each other and right now, they are doing a good job. It’s all about the team. They’ve got to stick with that. We’ve got to keep pushing.”
Berube has been alternating goaltenders, so he may go back to Ville Husso after starting Jordan Binnington on Sunday. Husso stopped 39 of 41 shots in the victory at Boston last week.
The Blues could get defenseman Nick Leddy back after he missed the last game with a facial laceration. Calle Rosen filled in for him vs. Nashville and scored twice.
“I like his speed and his ability to move the puck,” Berube said of Rosen. “He’s a heads-up player. He’s got real good feet. He makes good plays with the puck. He’s played well.”
The Bruins will play without winger David Pastrnak, defenseman Hampus Lindholm and goaltender Linus Ullmark, who remained back in Boston with injuries.
“(Pastrnak) has been here a lot of years, but again he’s a timing guy so he needs to play,” Cassidy said. “(Lindholm) hasn’t played a lot of hockey with us, so I think it’ll benefit him to play with our guys and our system. Right now we’d like them to get in and get playing as quickly as possible.”
Jeremy Swayman has regained the lead role in goal in Ullmark’s absence. He stopped 23 of 24 shots in the victory over Pittsburgh.
–Field Level Media