Dallas Stars vs. St. Louis Blues, 01/07/17 - Prediction & Preview
Written by: Stephen Sobek
Dallas Stars (16-23 SU, 17-22 O/U) vs. St. Louis Blues (20-19 SU, 16-16-7 O/U)
NHL: Saturday, January 7 @ 8:00 p.m. ET
The Line: Dallas Stars +140/St. Louis Blues -160 Total: 5.5
The Dallas Stars face the St. Louis Blues on Saturday night in a Central division showdown inside Scottrade Center. The Stars begin a three-game road trip after losing two consecutive contests back in Texas. The Blues continue to disappoint against teams that they really should be beating; they lost to Carolina 4-2 at home on Thursday.
The Seguin Show
The Dallas Stars are arguably the most top-heavy team in the entire NHL, as the duo of Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn has combined for 74 points already this season. Individually, they have 39 and 34 points respectively, while the Stars’ third-highest scorer, Jason Spezza, has just 23 to his name. Benn will unfortunately be forced to miss Saturday’s contest in St. Louis due to a foot injury. That is a big blow to Dallas, who just regained the services of Patrick Sharp on New Year’s Eve.
The Stars lost a tightly-contested game at home to the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday by a final score of 4-3. The Canadiens’ Max Pacioretty tallied a power play goal in the third period followed by the game-winner in overtime. The visitors were outshot 42-33 by Dallas, but Montreal picked up a critical extra point in the end. Seguin notched his 14th goal of the year in the opening stanza, good for the team lead in that category as well. The Stars’ fourth-worst penalty kill failed them again late in the game, as it surrendered two scores in the third. Alexander Radulov had the first while Pacioretty’s tally, mentioned above, came less than two minutes later.
The St. Louis Blues proved once again on Thursday that they just can’t ever live up to expectations. The Hurricanes are a bottom half team in the Eastern Conference, and St. Louis made them look like one of the NHL’s best squads. The Blues squandered yet another lead, allowing three unanswered goals over the last half of the contest. Goaltender Jake Allen turned aside 25 of 28 Hurricanes’ shots, and had this to say after the crushing defeat: “I thought this was our worst game of the year. We need to look at ourselves in the mirror after this (one).”
Vladimir Tarasenko had a goal for the Blues, notching it on the power play in the second period. He’s been the only player St. Louis has been able to count on all year, as Tarasenko is now tied for third in the league with 42 points and is knotted up with Boston’s David Pastrnak for fifth amongst all NHL skaters with 19 goals. Joel Edmundson recorded his first lamp-lighting of the season a little before Tarasenko’s for the Blues’ only scores of the evening.
The Stars are:
- 2-8 in their last 10 Saturday games
- 1-5 in their last 6 vs. a team with a winning record
The Blues are:
- 5-1 in their last 6 after scoring 2 goals or less in their previous game
Under normal circumstances, I’d take the underdog Stars in this situation. However, with the loss of Jamie Benn, Dallas just isn’t the same team. I expect the Blues to come out playing angry in this one, as their last performance was simply unacceptable by their standards. Take the home team with confidence.
The Pick: St. Louis Blues -160
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