(SportsNetwork.com) - The St. Louis Blues try to avoid a fourth straight setback on Tuesday night when they conclude their road trip against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The Blues won the first two contests of a six-game swing by a 7-0 margin, but have gone 0-1-2 since. They followed up a 6-3 loss in Minnesota on Saturday with a 2-1 overtime setback to the Detroit Red Wings the following day.
The Red Wings scored 24 seconds into overtime on the power play after Blues forward Patrik Berglund took a tripping call with 1:21 left in regulation. Alexander Steen scored St. Louis' goal and Jake Allen made 23 saves.
"We got a point out of it, but we have to keep it 5-on-5 more when we're in the playoffs," said Allen. "The guys battled and kept them from getting too many chances so that we at least got a point out of it."
Despite the three straight losses, the two points earned by the Blues over the skid have kept them one point up on the Nashville Predators for first place in the Central Division. Both clubs have nine games left to play and the Predators host the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday.
Allen is expected to make his first career start versus the Penguins tonight as he'll start a second game in a row with the Blues looking to give No. 1 Brian Elliott some additional rest.
It is unknown if Allen will be facing Penguins center Evgeni Malkin tonight. Malkin has missed the past four games due to a lower-body injury, but has not been ruled out for this game and was able to skate with the club on Sunday.
Forward Patrik Hornqvist, though, is slated to miss his fourth straight game with an undisclosed injury.
Minus those two forwards on Saturday, Pittsburgh still managed a 3-1 win over the Arizona Coyotes. The Penguins snapped a four-game slide in the finale of a three-game swing and will play four of their next five at home.
Sidney Crosby had a goal and an assist in the win, Daniel Winnik tallied the deciding tally and Brandon Sutter scored an odd goal 8:45 into the second period. He was credited with a power-play goal when goaltender Mike Smith's clearing attempt for the Coyotes hit off Sutter and into the net.
"I've never had one of those," said Sutter on his goal. "It was kind of a weird play."
Marc-Andre Fleury made 30 saves for the Penguins, who are third in the Metropolitan Division. They are two points behind the New York Islanders and just two up on the fourth-place Washington Capitals with a game in hand. The Isles host the Wild tonight, while the Caps are idle.
The Penguins had lost four of their past five against the Blues prior to a 4-2 win at St. Louis on Feb. 21. Fleury did not start that game, but should get the call tonight and is 3-4-1 versus St. Louis with a 2.26 goals against average and .927 save percentage in eight meetings.
The Blues have won four of their past six in Pittsburgh.