Blues Batter Blackhawks


If Chicago Blackhawks didn't believe Al MacInnis has a powerful slap shot, they do now.

MacInnis scored a goal and had two assists in the Blues' 8-3 win Saturday night over the Blackhawks. The goal, which was his third of the season, broke Jocelyn Thibault's right ring finger when he tried to stop the shot.

"It was a rocket," Blues coach Joel Quenneville said. "Obviously he has a lot of muscle to break somebody's finger when they have a glove on."

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  • The goal was the first for MacInnis since he returned to the lineup seven games ago. MacInnis missed 12 games due to an ankle injury.

    The eight goals were a season high for the Blues.

    "We did some nifty things on offense and a lot of guys got involved," Quenneville said.

    The MacInnis goal, which came on a St. Louis power play, gave the Blues a 1-0 lead and knocked Thibault out of the game. He was replaced by Marc Lamothe, who made his NHL debut.

    "It kind of put them in a tough spot by losing their No. 1 goalie," MacInnis said. "I don't want to be responsible for hurting somebody on the other team. It's unfortunate he got injured."

    Lamothe allowed the other seven Blues goals.

    "This is a rough way to start but at least the first one is out of the way," Lamothe said. "It's definitely a setback, but that's life."

    St. Louis moved into a tie with Detroit for first place in the Central Division. The Blues, whose eight goals were a season high, also extended their home unbeaten streak to five.

    MacInnis and Craig Conroy had a goal and two assists apiece, while Michal Handzus and Tyson Nash scored shorthanded goals for the Blues. Rookie Ladislav Nagy got his first NHL goal and Lubos Bartecko also scored.

    "Tonight, it was like men playing with boys," Blackhawks coach Lorne Molleken said.

    The largest crowd of the year at Kiel Center, 20,287, saw Young score for the first time since Oct. 27.

    "I was pressing and when I press, I really press," Young said. "When I was missing opportunities I was getting down. Fortunately tonight, I converted when I had chances."

    Young has four goals this season for St. Louis, which is 3-1-1 in its last five games and 7-1-2 in its last 10 home games. Chicago fell to 1-5 on its seven-game road trip.

    MacInnis scored a power-play goal on a pass from at 3:49 of the first. Chris Pronger, also credited with an assist on the goal, got his 200th NHL point.

    The goal was the first for MacInnis since returning to the lineup seven games ago. MacInnis missed 12 games due to an ankle injury.

    Blues goalie Roman Turek had 24 saves and is 5-1-2 in his last eight games.

    The last time St. Louis scored two shorthanded goals in a game was Dec. 4, 1997, against Toronto. Chicago had not allowed a goal in its last 15 shorthanded opportunities.

    Chicago's Tony Amonte scored his 13th goal and had an assist to extend his scoring streak to nine games.

    Dean McAmmond and Michael Nylander also scored for Chicago.

    The win was St. Louis' 100th at Kiel Center since they began playing there in 1994-95.

    St. Louis played its fourth game without center Pierre Turgeon, who is out with a back injury.

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