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Ducks Look To Rebound Against Blues In St. Louis

(Sports Network) - The new-look St. Louis Blues will shoot for a third straight victory this evening when they take on the Anaheim Ducks at Scottrade Center. Hours after earning a win Friday night in Buffalo, the Blues dealt former No. 1 overall pick Eric Johnson and center Jay McClement to the Colorado Avalanche in multi-player trade.

In addition to the two players, the Blues sent a conditional 2011 or 2012 first-round draft choice to Colorado in exchange for forward Chris Stewart and defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk, as well as a conditional 2011 or 2012 second- round draft choice. The deal comes shortly after the Blues shipped defenseman and team captain Eric Brewer to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Friday for a prospect and a third- round pick in the upcoming draft.

Johnson, 22, was selected first overall by the Blues in the 2006 draft and the young defenseman had posted five goals and 14 assists through 55 games with this season. He posted a career-high 39 points in 79 games last season after missing a year because of a knee injury. McClement has six goals and 10 assists this year and he has played in at least 81 games in each of the last four seasons.

While St. Louis dealt away its promising young defenseman, it got one in return in Shattenkirk. The 22-year-old was taken 14th overall in the 2007 draft by Colorado, and spent three years at Boston University before making his NHL debut this season. Through 46 games, Shattenkirk has posted seven goals and 19 assists.

The Blues also got a talented young forward in Stewart, who is in his third NHL season. Taken 18th overall in the 2006 draft, the 23-year-old has 13 goals and 17 assists in 36 games this season. He had a breakout year last season, when he netted 28 goals and 36 assists in 77 contests.

It's unclear if the new players will be available to play tonight for the Blues, but St. Louis and Colorado are scheduled to meet Tuesday in St. Louis, so none of the players involved in this deal will have to wait long to face their old teams. The Blues picked up a 3-0 win Friday evening in Buffalo, as Ty Conklin stopped 25 shots for his second shutout of the season. St. Louis, which had beaten Vancouver on Monday, has won two straight for the first time since a five-game run from December 21-31.

T.J. Oshie, David Backes and Vladimir Sobotka scored for the Blues. Conklin, starting in place of an injured Jaroslav Halak (right hand), recorded his 16th career shutout. "I thought the most important part of his game was getting the whistles," Blues coach Davis Payne said of Conklin. "He recognized the opportunities to stop the momentum of the play in the zone."

St. Louis is kicking off a three-game homestand tonight and the Blues have a solid 17-8-4 record as the host this season. Anaheim, meanwhile, had a six-game road winning streak halted on Friday night, as it was pounded by the host Minnesota Wild. Kyle Brodziak had a goal and two assists to lead the Wild to the 5-1 decision and drop Anaheim's road record to 15-14-3.

Corey Perry scored the lone goal for the Ducks, who have dropped two in a row since a four-game winning streak. Perry has five goals and 10 assists over a seven-game point streak. Curtis McElhinney stopped 21-of-26 shots for Anaheim, which is without No. 1 netminder Jonas Hiller. Hiller is sidelined due to the return of fatigue and lightheadedness symptoms. Anaheim also made a trade on Thursday, acquiring forward Jarkko Ruutu from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for a sixth-round pick in the 2011 draft. Ruutu is expected to make his Ducks debut tonight.

The Blues and Ducks have split a pair of meetings this season with each club winning a game on home ice. The clubs have combined to score 17 goals over those two contests. Anaheim has taken three of five and five out of eight games in this series overall, but the Ducks have lost two in a row and five of their last seven in the Gateway City. The Ducks are currently locked in a four-way tie for the West's final playoff seeds. The Blues are seven points behind Anaheim in the conference standings.

For more information on tonight's game, be sure to read Anaheim Calling.