After leading the NHL in many goaltending categories a year ago, the St. Louis Blues are experiencing some net difficulties.
Goaltender Brian Elliott, who will start again Saturday against the Anaheim Ducks, hasn't been sharp since taking over for injured goalie Jaroslav Halak.
Elliott has lost his last three starts and is 3-4 with a 3.30 goals-against average.
After leading the NHL in save percentage last season at .940, Elliott's save percentage has dropped to .864 after allowing nine goals on his last 40 shots.
The Blues rank 24th in the NHL with a 3.18 goals-against average. Halak is 3-0, but his goals-against also is below .900 (.889).
Halak has returned to skating and is expected to face shots Saturday and Sunday. Hitchcock said Monday is the earliest he could return to action.
"Brian will play on Saturday and then we'll see how Jaro is," Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said. "He's going to stop pucks tomorrow and stop them on Sunday, then we'll see."