Originally posted on Fox Sports Midwest  |  Last updated 11/19/11
(AP) -- Hired less than two weeks ago, St. Louis Blues coach Ken Hitchcock is off to the best five-game start in team history. Continuing that success, however, could prove difficult against the Northwest Division-leading Minnesota Wild. The Blues try for a season-best fourth consecutive victory Saturday night against the Wild, who look to win five straight at home for the first time in more than three and a half years. St. Louis (10-7-1) seems to have turned its season around under Hitchcock, who replaced the fired Davis Payne. The Blues have gone 4-0-1 under their new coach while outscoring opponents 14-4, surrendering a combined two goals in the wins. As impressive as the change of fortune has been, St. Louis' run has come at home. The Blues have dropped three straight on the road and six of nine there this season. St. Louis has converted two of 29 power-play opportunities as the visiting team - 6.9 percent, the lowest mark in the league. "We did a number and a job we're supposed to do, and we did it at home," Hitchcock said. "Now we've got to take it on the road. It's whether we can take this same type of intensity and effort onto the road. That's the next challenge facing us." The Blues could struggle to generate offense against the Wild (11-5-3), who have given up two goals during their four-game home winning streak - killing off all 14 of their opponents' power plays. Minnesota, 6-2-1 at the Xcel Energy Center this season, hasn't won five straight there since closing 2007-08 with six home wins in a row. After taking three of five on a grueling trip, the Wild returned home and defeated Colorado 1-0 on Thursday. Devin Setoguchi scored with 2:31 remaining while Niklas Backstrom made 27 saves for Minnesota, 8-2-0 in its last 10. "Mentally it was very tough," Backstrom said of playing Thursday after the five-game, eight-day road swing. "The way we're playing defense at the moment is good. For sure we want to do better, but the guys are really bearing down and helping each other out there and that's a big part of our game." Backstrom has gone 6-2-0 with a 2.00 goals-against average and one shutout at home against St. Louis. The Wild have taken five of six from the Blues, beating them 2-1 on Nov. 5 behind 30 saves from Josh Harding in the most recent meeting. Harding has gone 5-2-0 with a 1.68 GAA in nine games against St. Louis. Halak started opposite Harding and dropped to 0-2-2 with a 3.05 GAA against Minnesota. He has gone 0-5-0 with a 3.71 GAA on the road this season. St. Louis could give the nod to Brian Elliott, 3-1-0 with a shutout and a 1.51 GAA in four road starts. In his only career appearance versus the Wild, he stopped nine of 12 shots and was lifted in the first period of Ottawa's 5-3 defeat Feb. 14, 2009. Blues forward Chris Stewart will serve the second game of a three-game suspension for a hit on Detroit's Niklas Kronwall on Tuesday. Wild defenseman Marek Zidlicky is likely to miss a second consecutive game and left wing Guillaume Latendresse remains out, but defenseman Marco Scandella could return following a three-game absence. All three players are dealing with concussions.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
One Gotta Go: NFL Legends (and Jose Canseco!) Have No Love For Captain America
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

U.S. Soccer hands Solo six month suspension for Olympic comments

Report: Josh Gordon will be restricted free agent after 2016

Chargers release statement on Joey Bosa situation

Yoenis Cespedes says he will not opt out of Mets contract

Zach Johnson unloads on Olympic golf

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Drew Brees says players do not trust league office, Goodell

Lawsuit over Hall of Fame Game refiled after McAfee comments

Report: Griffin plans to re-sign with Clippers, won't be traded

Report: Wentz unlikely to see any playing time this season

Minnesota Wild names Prince’s ‘Let’s Go Crazy’ official goal song

Gabby Douglas joining judges for Miss America pageant

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for our favorite football movies

Hard not to be cynical about LeBron's 'Cleveland Hustles'

Familiar faces that won't be seen in the NFL this year

24 quintessential moments of Kobe Bryant's career

Revisiting the 10 biggest mistakes of the NFL offseason

One Gotta Go: NFL legends (and Jose Canseco!) have no love for Captain America

Four WNBA teams to pay attention to post-Olympic break

Madden 17 shows how vital a fresh coat of paint can be

Why people just can't get behind the Washington Nationals

Washington's Josh Norman speaks candidly about multiple NFL talking points

Derrick Rose: Knicks have chance to win every game

Ranking the MLB divisional races

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for our favorite football movies

Hard not to be cynical about LeBron James' 'Cleveland Hustles'

Ranking the uniforms of the NFL from worst to best

Familiar faces that won't be seen in the NFL this year

24 quintessential moments of Kobe Bryant's career

One Gotta Go: NFL legends (and Jose Canseco!) have no love for Captain America

Four WNBA teams to pay attention to post-Olympic break

Madden 17 shows how vital a fresh coat of paint can be

Why people just can't get behind the Washington Nationals

QUIZ: Name every player to win a championship with Kobe Bryant

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker