Blues aim for consistency at home vs. Lightning
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The St. Louis Blues will try to start their first winning streak in more than a month when they host the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday.
The Blues have not won back-to-back games since they opened the season with a five-game winning streak in October.
"Last few games, like, we lose one, win one," Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko said. "We should be more consistent."
The Blues defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets 6-3 on Saturday for just their third victory in their last 10 games. They picked up their play after getting a stern lecture from coach Craig Berube between the first and second period.
"Well, we needed something," Berube said. "In the first period, we got clearly outskated. Coming out, this game at home, we can't start like that."
That poor start came after the Blues faded late in their 3-2 overtime road loss to the Chicago Blackhawks.
"We've been having a tough time the last couple games," forward Ivan Barbashev said. "I think it was time to turn around things and play simple, hard, and that's what we did in the second (period), and it looks like the game turned around."
The Lightning will be looking to get back on track after suffering a 4-2 road loss to the Minnesota Wild on Sunday. That was just the second regulation loss in their last 14 games.
"A couple of breakdowns, that's the difference in the game," coach Jon Cooper said.
"I thought it was a close game," Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman said. "The second period had to kill off a few penalties. That third goal is on me. For some reason, I thought they had three guys in the corner, and I left a man alone in front. Small differences in the game that cost us at the end."
With key forward Brayden Point shelved for several weeks with an upper-body injury, the Lightning are looking for other forwards to provide offense.
Winger Corey Perry has a four-game point streak after producing just one point in his first 16 games this season.
"He's getting tons of chances," Cooper said.
With wingers James Neal and Klim Kostin on injured reserve and forward David Perron sidelined with an upper-body injury, the Blues recalled forward Logan Brown from Springfield of the AHL for this game.
The Lightning lost forward Mathieu Joseph to an undisclosed injury during the game at Minnesota. He is one of the team's top checkers and penalty killers.
"When he goes down, it's just for a lot of guys playing PK, guys double shifting on the PK and stuff," Lightning winger Alex Killorn said. "It's just a lot of minutes."
Joseph is questionable for this game. On the plus side, defenseman Erik Cernak could return for this game after spending the last eight games on the injured list.
"It will be a game-time decision," Cooper said.
This game starts a home-and-home sequence for these teams, who play again Thursday night in Tampa.
--Field Level Media
Updated November 29, 2021