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NHL on NBCSN: Avs try to slow down bustling Blues

St. Louis Blues v Colorado Avalanche

St. Louis Blues v Colorado Avalanche

Michael Martin

NBCSN will continue its coverage of the 2014-15 campaign when the St. Louis Blues host the Colorado Avalanche at the Scottrade Center at 8:00 p.m. ET tonight. In addition to NBCSN, you can also watch the game and pre-show online.

In the first five games of their seven-game homestand, the St. Louis Blues have been close to perfect. Meanwhile, the Colorado Avalanche have endured a frustrating five-game road trip that ends with tonight’s contest.

The Blues have been impressive just about any way you slice it since 2015 rolled around, really.

After dropping their first game of the new year, they’ve won six of their last seven. St. Louis has been grabbing victories in a variety ways, from strong goaltending (Brian Elliott shut out the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday) to frighteningly efficient work from their top two lines.

It’s enough that you have to label the Blues the favorite on Monday night, especially since St. Louis has taken three of four games from Colorado so far in 2014-15.

While the Avs only have one win in their last four (all on the road), two of those defeats came via shootouts.

They’re starting to enjoy better work from the likes of Nathan MacKinnon and Matt Duchene while their goaltending has been mostly stellar since Semyon Varlamov came back from injury issues.

The Blues have some clear motivation in trying to catch the Nashville Predators for the top spot in the Central Division, yet the Avalanche have even more on the line. With 48 standings points in 46 games played, the Avalanche are currently three points behind the Calgary Flames for the West’s final playoff spot and are currently ranked 11th overall in the conference.

With the 2015 All-Star break approaching, these two teams try to soak up some key standings points, and you can watch it all on NBCSN tonight.

Follow James O’Brien @cyclelikesedins