After stumbling in their last meeting with an Eastern Conference representative, the St. Louis Blues look to test their mettle versus the visiting Boston Bruins on Thursday. St. Louis unleashed a season-high 50 shots on Tuesday but suffered a 5-4 shootout loss to Ottawa to drop to 9-0-1 against Eastern foes. Captain David Backes scored for the third straight contest and also tallied in the Blues' 3-2 shootout victory over the Bruins on Nov. 21.Boston improved to 7-1-1 in its last nine games with a 3-1 triumph over Vancouver on Tuesday. The Bruins look to continue their good fortune without the services of captain Zdeno Chara, who will miss Thursday's contest as he prepares to carry Slovakia's flag during the Opening Ceremony at the Winter Olympics. "As much as (Chara) is a big part of that back end, other guys have done a great job in making our whole (defense) corps pretty solid," Boston coach Claude Julien said.TV: 8 p.m. ET, TSN2, NESN (Boston), FSN Midwest (St. Louis)ABOUT THE BRUINS (36-16-3): Jarome Iginla notched his 600th career assist against the Canucks and has recorded 11 points (three goals, eight assists) and a plus-9 rating in his last six contests. The 36-year-old insisted he wasn't even aware of the impending milestone. "To be honest, I didn't know that going in, but I'm thankful for that," Iginla told ESPN Boston. "You don't really think of those until you get there or whatever. I'm just thankful to keep playing as long as I have, and I'm having a great time and it's awesome to be here with these guys."ABOUT THE BLUES (37-12-6): With Buffalo goaltender Ryan Miller's name liberally being tossed around for a potential trade, coach Ken Hitchock continues to keep his faith in Jaroslav Halak. The latter has been confirmed to start Thursday's contest despite yielding three or more goals in four of his last eight appearances. Halak and Brian Elliott also have expiring contracts, so general manager Doug Armstrong could be looking to make a deal prior to the trade deadline.OVERTIME1. Boston D David Warsofsky was recalled from Providence of the American Hockey League and likely will replace Chara in the lineup.2. St. Louis went 0-for-7 on the power play Tuesday after scoring a goal with the man advantage in its previous three contests.3. The Bruins have recorded points in seven of eight contests versus Central Division foes (4-1-3).PREDICTION: Bruins 2, Blues 1