Blues off to franchise-best start as Husso blanks Kings
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Vladimir Tarasenko scored two goals and Ville Husso recorded his second career shutout as the St. Louis Blues remained undefeated in five games with a 3-0 victory Monday night over the Los Angeles Kings.
The Blues are off to a 5-0 start for the first time in franchise history. The Kings haven't won since their season opener.
It was Tarasenko's first multi-goal game since Feb. 14, 2019. Husso stopped 34 shots in making his first start of the season between the pipes. The Finnish goalie, in his second season, improved to 2-1 against Kings.
Kings goalie Jonathan Quick had 32 saves in falling to 12-16-3 lifetime against St. Louis.
Tarasenko's first goal of the season came on a dazzling play at 3:08 of the third period to snap a scoreless tie. Tarasenko took a cross-ice pass from Tory Krug. Tarasenko cut inside Kings defenseman Mikey Anderson and snapped a wrist shot in the top corner past Quick.
For the second goal, Ivan Barbashev poked the puck forward to Tarasenko and he made it look easy on the breakaway. And Tarasenko’s third goal of the season came with just under five minutes left and the fans began to chant, “Vladi, Vladi, Vladi."
Tarasenko has a four-game point scoring streak (three goals, three assists), and in his career, he has 23 points (12 goals, 11 assists) in 25 games against Los Angeles.
The Blues added an empty-net goal by David Perron with about a minute left. Perron has six goals over the last three games.
The win gave the Blues back-to-back wins over Los Angeles. St. Louis routed the Kings 7-3 on Saturday.
The Blues put up 10 shots on goal in the first seven minutes of the game against Quick before the Kings recorded their first shot 7:32 into the first period. St. Louis outshot Los Angeles 18-7 in the period, and St. Louis had just three shots on goal in the second period while the Kings had 11.
The Blues are still without Brandon Saad, who remains in COVID-19 protocol. Saad did not practice with his teammates the morning skate. ... Kings LW Brendan Lemieux also is in COVID-19 protocol.
Defenseman Sean Walker got his legs tangled with David Perron after a faceoff late in the first period. The two went down and Perron landed awkwardly on Walker’s right knee, which got bent in a bad angle. Walker needed help getting off the ice and did not return to play.
Blues LW Pavel Buchnevich was back after he served a two-game suspension for a head butt against Arizona forward Lawson Crouse on Oct. 18. In the Blues’ first four games, Buchnevich has played only one full game. ... Kings D Drew Doughty (knee) was scratched again after being injured Friday night in a knee-to-knee hit from Dallas D Jani Hakanpaa. Doughty had tied the franchise record for most points through the first three games of a season for a defenseman, with seven points (1 goal, 6 assists). ... Kings D Austin Strand, who was recalled from the Ontario Reign on Saturday, made his 2021-22 season debut. Strand appeared in 13 games for the Kings during last season.
Blues: Host Colorado on Thursday.
Kings: Host Winnipeg on Thursday.
More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports