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St. Louis Blues at Minnesota Wild Betting Preview

On trade deadline Monday, the St. Louis Blues and Minnesota Wild are set to face off once again, this time in Saint Paul. The Blues (19-16-6) are coming off of back-to-back home wins against the Wild (24-13-3) and three straight wins overall, while the Wild have dropped three of their last four.

Here is a closer look at Monday night’s game, from key stats to players to watch. As things currently stand, Minnesota is a -148 favorite at home, while St. Louis is +126 as road underdogs.

By the Numbers

These are two evenly matched teams when you compare some of their numbers side by side. Minnesota ranks 13th with 2.95 goals per game, and St. Louis is 16th with 2.85, while St. Louis holds a slight 18.5 to 15.1 percent advantage on the power play.

And although the Blues are 12th in shots per game and the Wild are 26th, just 1.2 shots separate them.

Defensively, there’s a bit more of a difference, and most of it favors the Wild. Minnesota allows an average of 2.7 goals per game, 12th in the NHL, while St. Louis sits 21st with 3.07.

Although the Blues allow about one shot less per game, the biggest advantage for the Wild is on the penalty kill, where their fourth-ranked penalty kill rate of 84 percent outweighs St. Louis’ 76.2 percent, which ranks 25th.

Players to Watch

Although he trails left-winger David Perron by one point for the team-lead, center, and captain Ryan O’Reilly has been excellent. St. Louis’ leader with 17 goals, O’Reilly has four goals over the last two games against the Wild, including a hat trick in Friday’s 9-1 drubbing.

As for Perron, the veteran is still producing points. In fact, he’s currently riding a three-game point streak entering Monday, dishing out an assist in each to up his total to 27 on the year.

As far as other members of the Blues who have been on a roll, winger Sammy Blais and defenseman Vince Dunn come to mind. Blais came back after missing a couple of games and scored goals in back-to-back contests, highlighted by a three-point effort Friday against the Wild. Meanwhile, Dunn has assisted in three straight games, including three on Saturday.

Switching gears to the Wild, left-winger Kevin Fiala has been the biggest goal-scorer as of late. Fiala, who missed Saturday’s game with an upper-body injury, had a hat trick last week in Colorado to give him 14 goals on the year. He is likely to be back on the ice for Monday’s matchup.

Fiala’s 25 points are second on the team to dynamic rookie Kirill Kaprizov. The left-winger has a team-high 16 goals to go with 18 assists but has been held without a point for each of the last two games.

Others to focus on for Minnesota include right-winger Ryan Hartman and defenseman Jared Spurgeon. Hartman scored goals in back-to-back games last week against the Avalanche, boosting him up to six goals on the season. On the other hand, Spurgeon had four assists in that two-game series, which bumped him to 11 helpers for the year.


The Blues should have no trouble turning to Jordan Binnington to start once again. Binnington has allowed just one goal in each of his last three starts and currently sits at 12-11-5 with a 2.65 GAA, and .910 save percentage.

After Kaapo Kahkonen was in net for Minnesota’s shellacking on Friday, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the Wild use Cam Talbot again after starting him on Saturday. Talbot is 12-6-3 on the year with a 2.45 GAA and .922 save percentage.

Betting Pick

After the Blues dominated on Friday, they needed overtime to win on Saturday. That second game was much closer in every way, with the teams each having exactly 30 shots on goals. But it was also a game the Wild likely should have won, giving up the game-tying goal with 42 seconds left and then the winner with two seconds left in OT.

Monday night, I like the Wild to get the W. Minnesota is a dominant team at home, going 14-4-0 this season at the Xcel Energy Center. They’re also a strong defensive team who can put some pressure on St. Louis’ scorers for the full 60 minutes.

Take the Wild to win this one at home.

Pick: Wild -148

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