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Who are these guys? What do they want?! [Game #29 preview - STL]

Who are they? St. Louis Blues (14-10-5)

What do they want? To keep their heads above water in the *#$%ing Western Conference; perhaps a charm to ward off the evil eye

What's their ****ing problem? Injured: T.J. Oshie (ankle); Andy McDonald, David Perron (concussion); Roman Polak (wrist); Alex Pietrangelo (upper body), Erik Johnson (knee). So, only some of their best forwards and their top two defensemen. No biggie.

Who the **** do they think they are? (IN) David Payne (first full season as coach); Jaroslav Halak, Vladimir Sobotka (via trade); Adam Cracknell, Chris Porter, Dave Scatchard, Nikita Nikitin (recalled from AHL). (OUT) Chris Mason, Nate Guenin, Darryl Sydor, David Rundblad, Julian Talbot, Lars Eller, D.J. King, Keith Tkachuk, Ian Schultz, Paul Kariya.

What, are we supposed to be scared? The Blues, along with the Red Wings, were one of the teams I pegged to collect more points than they did last season. Through trades and retirements, the old guard has largely been swept away for the new; unfortunately for them, key pieces of that young core are out at the moment. Right now they score even fewer goals per game than we do. Still, they boast a fine 9-2-2 record at home, reversing the trend from last season.

I thought we were friends! Ex-Kings: Dave Taylor (Director of Player Personnel); Ex-Blue: Michal Handzus. Somewhere in the distance, Andy Murray is still frowning.

Yeah, well, wait till they get a load of: Oscar "Cute Overload" Moller, still with us for now, plus speed racer Alec Martinez and Davis Drewiske now that Matt Greene's wobbly status has been confirmed. Oh hi Mitchell, thank God you're back.

Goalie Update: Since Halak played last night, Ty Conklin will get the start.

The Kings have games in hand on teams ahead of them in the standings, but they must make them count. Let's hope they keep raising their game.