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Dunn wishes he could have gotten in a couple more punches at Trouba

Dunn wishes he could have gotten in a couple more punches at Trouba

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Blues battle Rangers

An altercation occurs between Blues' Vince Dunn and Rangers' Jacob Trouba moments after the Blues defeated the Rangers on Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020, at Enterprise Center. The Blues won 5-2. Photo by Lexi Browning, lbrowning@post-dispatch.com.

The Blues-Rangers game on Saturday night finished with a fight, as Blues defenseman Vince Dunn and the Rangers' Jacob Trouba squared off in a battle that got everyone in the ice involved.

Dunn almost knocked Trouba off his feet with a left during the scrap.

"It would have been nice to get a couple more," Dunn said.

The game had gotten increasingly chippy in the third period as it became evident the Rangers weren't going to come back from three goals down. With 1:45 go to in the game, Mackenzie MacEachern and New York's Brendan Smith each got 10-minute misconducts for some action behind the Blues net. 

The Blues got a power play with 37 seconds to go after a high-sticking call on Brett Howden, and there was a faceoff in the Rangers end with nine seconds to play. Dunn got the puck and skated behind the net and out the other side, with Trouba hacking away at his legs the whole time. A penalty was going to be called on Trouba, but the game ended before there was a whistle. At the buzzer, Dunn dropped his gloves and went at Trouba.

"He just kept slashing me and slashing me and slashing me," Dunn said. "I mean, the game was pretty much won and they were still running around trying to hit us and fight us. I think one of their guys came all the way across the ice and tried to hit one of our guys so if they want to play to the end, so will we, we’re not just going to give up, especially if we’re on the power play. I wasn’t trying to do anything too crazy, I was just skating around the net and he slashed me, at least six times, from one side of the ice all the way to the other."

Trouba was fined $5,000 for the slashes and got 15 minutes worth of penalties, a five-minute major for the slashing and a game misconduct. Dunn got two minutes for roughing.

"I’m not a fighter but I don’t mind it sometimes," Dunn said. "It’s an emotional game and if you’re just going to hack at me then I’ll probably react like anyone would."

When the officials finally separated everyone, they escorted the Rangers to their bench and out the door back to their dressing room. The Blues players, meanwhile, waited on the other side of the red line, told to stay there by the officials, until the Rangers had all left. A few Rangers lingered on their way to the bench and the Blues stood there, staring. MacEachern, watching on TV from the dressing room after he'd been removed from the game after his misconduct, wished he could have been out there.

"Especially for the old red-line stand after the buzzer went," he said. "That looked pretty fun. I think that’s the kind of moment where the team comes together, doesn’t back down. They realize it’s our home ice. It’s kind of cool to see. As a team stand there and wait for the other team to get off the ice."

ALLEN GETS START

Having won three games in a row and looking pretty good doing it, it will be more of the same for the Blues tonight when they face Anaheim at Enterprise Center. 

The Blues lineup will be unchanged, with the only exception being that Jake Allen will start in goal. It's been nine days since Allen's most recent start and Jordan Binnington figures to get the starts against Philadelphia and Colorado to close out the schedule before the All-Star break.

Sticking with the same lineup means that Colton Parayko is still out and Jordan Kyrou will once again be a healthy scratch.

"I like the games," Blues coach Craig Berube said. "I know that I switched a forward here and there but the defense right now is strong, looks good, so I'm going to keep them the same. Up front, I thought all four lines contributed in the game and did a good job. So same lineup tonight."

Berube said there's a "good possibility" Parayko would get in a game before the All-Star break. After tonight, he's got two chances, at home on Wednesday against Philadelphia and at Colorado on Saturday. After that, it's the All-Star break.

That status quo means Carl Gunnarsson also waits for the chance to return as he comes back from his injury. Gunnarsson is good to go, Berube said, but the play of Niko Mikkola has led to Berube keeping Gunnarsson out.

"We say to Gunny right now is, you gotta be patient right now ad it's hard for him.. He's a veteran, the guy's played real good hockey for us and he's played in the league a long time. It was unfortunate, his injuries and things like that. It's going pretty good right now back there so we're just going to leave it the same way."

Gunnarsson is still on injured reserve, even though Berube said he's good enough to play, but since Parayko has now missed more than a week, the Blues could backdate him being on IR and still be able to activate him whenever he was ready to play.

The most likely scenario going forward has Mikkola going down when Parayko is healthy. Despite how well Mikkola has played, he'll come out of the lineup when Parayko is ready to return and then probably be sent down rather than sit as the seventh defenseman.

LAST TIME WITH DUCKS

When the Blues faced the Ducks on Nov. 16, their 4-1 loss ended a nine-game point streak. The Blues had won seven in a row, then lost in a shootout and lost in overtime.

"That's a long time ago," Berube said. "We know what happened in that game. A couple of broken plays. It was a close game, 3-1, an empty-net goal. Probably got to score more than one goal."

Anaheim has lost three in a row and is 3-6-1 in its past 10, but they still raise some issues.

"They have the puck a lot," Berube said. "They're probably in the top five of the league in puck possession. They shoot a lot. Watching the film, we've got to make sure we're strong at our blueline and not allowing them in there and forcing them to dump pucks and then we've got to break out and get out of our end."  

LINES

Business as usual for the Blues:

Forwards

Sanford-O'Reilly-Perron

Schwartz-Schenn-Sundqvist

Steen-Thomas-Bozak

MacEachern-de la Rose-Barbashev

Defensemen

Dunn-Pietrangelo

Bouwmeester-Faulk

Mikkola-Bortuzzo

Goalie

Allen

DUCKS

Forwards

Henrique-Getzlaf-Sprong

Comtois-Lundestrom-Rakell

Jones-Steel-Kase

Deslauriers-Shore-Rowney

Defensemen

Lindholm-Manson

Fowler-Gubranson

Larsson-Del Zotto

Goalie

Gibson


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