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Avs Take on Blues in Game 34

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The Colorado Avalanche face The St. Louis Blues in a crucial game before the Christmas break.

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Avs just completed a successful road trip in which they collected five of a possible six points.  Pittsburgh was the only loss (in ot) and was more of a victory because the Avs escaped without a Mumps outbreak.  While Buffalo was a pretty assured win, it was still nice to see five goals after the shutout in Pitt, and it doesn't get much better than beating detroit.

The Avs take on their current rival at 6pm Mountain at The Pepsi Center tonight.  I say current rival because of Chris Stewart's fight with Sarich and Backes jumping MacKinnon in the games in STL last season.  Things always seem to get chippy between Reaves and Bordy, hopefully Bordy's prescence cuts down on Reave's liberties.  Hitchcock has long been a thorn in The Avs side, way back to his late nineties days with Dallas.  And of course there's the Paul Stastny situation.

Paul Stastny left for 7 million reasons this past summer, and fans are likely to continue booing him whenever he touches the puck.  I'm not sure he deserves it and I doubt it will last, but it still sucks seeing a former Av return on such bad terms.  Paul hasn't been playing up to his previous season, posting underwhelming numbers and solid two way play, something Avs fans are familiar with.  St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock called Stastny out a couple of weeks ago, and Paul has responded with a workman like 6 points and nearly 22 minutes a game in December.

In goal for The Blues could be Martin Broduer as Varly is likely to return from the DL.  Broduer has been poor in his stint with The Blues, a sub .900 sv% and a 3.60 gaa despite a stout defense in front of him.  Marty has given St. Louis a chance to win several games however, and rides these stats to a 2-2 record thus far.

The lines tonight are likely to be the same, save for Varly in net

Talbot-Duchene-MacKinnon

Landeskog-O'Reilly-Briere

Tanguay-Mitchell-Iginla

McLeod-Cliche-Bordeleau

Hejda-Johnson

Guenin-Barrie

Stuart-Redmond

Varlamov

The game is on at 6 pm Mountain, 8 Eastern on NBCSN