Saturday, October 29, 2011

Blues lose defenseman to injury

Huskins to be sidelined indefinitely with ankle fracture

ST. LOUIS -- The Blues will be missing a piece of their defensive corps that has given them some pleasant, steady playing time since being inserted in the lineup.

Veteran Kent Huskins suffered a fractured bone in his left ankle and will miss Sunday's game at Edmonton and will be sidelined indefinitely. Huskins, 32, will be reevaluated by team doctors when the Blues return from their trip Monday.

The Blues took eight defensemen with them on their Western Canadian trip, and that means either Nikita Nikitin or Taylor Chorney, claimed on waivers from Edmonton Oct. 11, will be in the lineup when the Blues play the Oilers at 7 p.m. Sunday.
(Getty Images)
The Blues' Kent Huskins (6) was injured in the Blues' 3-1 loss at Calgary
Friday that will sideline the defenseman indefinitely.

It was late in the second or early in the third period ... it was down to our right," Blues coach Davis Payne said Saturday. "It was a bad-angle (shot by the Flames) and the guy just went to throw it to the net. Husky went out and blocked it and just caught it in the perfect spot.

"We'll get him back home, get him evaluated and get a real clear diagnosis on a time line. He's going to be out for a bit."

Huskins, who was scratched in the season-opener against Nashville, has played in all nine games since, totalling two goals and two assists to go along with a plus-6 rating, which was the best among the team's defensemen.

Playing with Alex Pietrangelo, Huskins was averaging 16 minutes 54 seconds of ice time. Pietrangelo will likely get friend and familiar partner Carlo Colaiacovo back on his pairing, and either Nikitin or Chorney will likely play with Roman Polak for the time being.

"We developed chemistry on and off the ice," Pietrangelo said of Huskins. "It's tough to see a guy playing big minutes go down. But we have guys who can step in."

Nikitin has not played since Colaiacovo returned from a concussion four games ago. His last action was Oct. 18 in Los Angeles. He's played in six games and has no points and a minus-4 rating, being a healthy scratch the last four games. Chorney has not played a game with the Blues, being a healthy scratch for eight games.

Payne said a decision had not been made yet as to who would be inserted in the lineup.

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