GAME PREVIEW: Mikkola returns, Berube shares thoughts on form ahead of Las Vegas Matchup

St. Louis Blues

St. Louis Blues goaltender Joel Hofer catches the puck during the first period of the team’s NHL hockey game against the San Jose Sharks on Thursday, Nov. 4, 2021, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Josie Lepe)

ST. LOUIS — The St. Louis Blues (9-6-2) host the Las Vegas Golden Knights (11-7-0) tonight at 7 p.m. at the Enterprise Center.

The Blues have not been in the best run of form, totaling just two wins in their last 10 contests.

Blues defender Niko Mikkola will make his return to the ice following a brief stint on the COVID Protocols List. Head Coach Craig Berube will nearly have his full roster at his disposal, dealing with just one sidelined player– Center Brayden Schenn, who last played on November 4 before taking time to nurse an upper-body injury.

Coach Berube, Mikkola and center Oskar Sundqvist took the podium shortly after the team’s morning skate.

BERUBE’S THOUGHTS

On recent form: “Anxious isn’t the word. I think there were a few games that we let slip away that we probably played really good hockey and should have won the game. We have to just limit some mistakes at times, and, if we do that and time some saves, well get back on track.”

On Golden Knights: “Their back end is really good. They move the puck well and they defend hard. They got some real speed up front and they play an aggressive game. There’s not a lot of room out there and you have to fight for space against them. All the little things will matter.”

On Return of Mikkola: “He played a couple of solid games then got COVID. It was unfortunate. We wanted to get him back in there. He’s a big body, and he’s aggressive and difficult to play against.”

PLAYERS THOUGHTS:

Sundqvist on Recent Form: “I’m a bit up and down for myself during games. I need to find the right level throughout the full game. I think the pace is all fine now. It’s just the timing of stuff. I’m overskating some situations when I can take it a little bit easier and glide into it instead of skating full stride. It’s coming more and more. It’s been feeling better, timing ways, with every game, so hopefully, it keeps getting better.”

Mikkola on Return to Ice: “I’ve been practicing pretty hard for like a week. So, I’m ready to go.”

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