NBC Sports Network will be covering the tilt between the San Jose Sharks and St. Louis Blues at 5:00 p.m. PDT Tuesday, October 15. A quick glance at the game preview makes it clear why this contest is featured.
Five games into the 2013-14 NHL season, the Sharks are perfect: 67.5 percent of ice time ahead in their five regulation wins, 42.7 percent with a multiple-goal lead and just 11.8 percent trailing while amassing a combined score of 25-7.
Four games into theirs, the Blues are also perfect: 64.7 percent of the time ahead and 35.1 percent with a multiple-goal lead while amassing a 19-7 scoring edge in four regulation wins. They have yet to trail.
One of San Jose's wins came in double overtime of the first game of 2012 Western Conference quarterfinals, while the other came after their opponents returned the morning of the game from a flight delay out of Vancouver. Just one of the losses was even in overtime, and the combined score was 34-18.
The Blues have also been home for the entire season, where they remain for this contest. Even though both of their losses in the last 12 games have come at home, they certainly would not want to be playing in San Jose. Aside from the travel, being two time zones off the body's clock and line match-up difficulties, the Sharks are riding an 11-game winning streak at home and have been best in the NHL in the 2013 calendar year.
Having the recent edge head-to-head, playing at home and being more rested without being rusty certainly gives the Blues an advantage. Nevertheless, it is the personnel on the ice and the bench that determines the outcome of NHL games. The list of photos breaks down the forward, blue line, goalie and coach comparisons.