St. Louis Blues vs. Los Angeles Kings
Game 1: 7 p.m. Tuesday at St. Louis
Game 2: 8:30 p.m. Thursday at St. Louis
Game 3: 9 p.m. Saturday at Los Angeles
Game 4: 9 p.m. May 6 at Los Angeles
Game 5: (if necessary) May 8 at St. Louis, TBA
Game 6: (if necessary) May 10 at Los Angeles, TBA
Game 7: (if necessary) May 13 at St. Louis, TBA
By the numbers: Blues (29-17-2; 60 points; 7-3 in last 10 games; 2.38 team goals-against average); Kings (27-16-5; 59 points; 12-3 in last 15 games; 2.40 goals-against average).
2012-13 series: Kings were 3-0 against the Blues (winning 4-1, 6-4 and 4-2) and are unbeaten in eight straight vs. the Blues counting the 2012 playoffs.
2012 revisited: These teams met in the second round of the Western Conference playoffs last spring and the Kings won four straight on their way to the Stanley Cup championship.
What to expect: These are two big, physical teams and the Kings used their edge in size and strength to push the Blues right out of the playoffs a year ago. Both are strong in goal and defensively, so expect a low-scoring, hard-hitting series with plenty of banging around both nets.
Hot for the Blues: Goalie Brian Elliott caught fire late in the season and is 11-2 with a 1.28-goals against average and three shutouts in his last 13 games. The Blues have won six straight at home.
Hot for the Kings: Jeff Carter racked up 26 goals in just 48 games along with 33 points, but wasn't even the Kings' leading scorer. That would be Anze Kopitar, with 10 goals and 42 points in 47 games --although Kopitar doesn't have a goal in his last 16 games. The Kings have won seven straight at home.