2016 second-round pick was hopeful to make Blues roster out of
camp, ramping up practices; will likely start season in San Antonio
MARYLAND HEIGHTS, Mo. -- Jordan Kyrou was on a fast track of competing for a spot on the Blues' roster this season after a solid debut season in San Antonio.
But it all had a slight derailment when Kyrou was injured late in the season and needed surgery on his kneecap. It's been a slower process to get back into the swing of things, but Kyrou, 21, almost looks like he's a full go in practice.
|(St. Louis Blues photo)|
Jordan Kyrou was in the opening night lineup for the Blues last season but
coming off knee surgery, will likely begin this season in San Antonio.
"I'm feeling better every day," Kyrou said after practice Thursday. "I get a little bit better. I'm trying to get my strength back and stuff like that.
"Every day I get on the ice, my knee's feeling a lot stronger. Just trying to take it day by day. ... Maybe (going) a little slower. It's my first time dealing with a knee injury, knee surgery, so I'm learning as I go through."
With the regular season just six days away, Kyrou will more than likely begin the season in San Antonio, where the injury occurred with roughly nine games remaining; he had 43 points (16 goals, 27 assists) in 47 regular-season games there last season.
"It was kind of like a nothing play," Kyrou said. "I fell kind of awkwardly and I just hurt my knee. Someone's stick got caught between my legs and kind of like turned and as I turned, I fell over top of it. It wasn't like a big hit or anything and I fell into the boards. It hurt a bit, but I didn't think of it too much. I could walk, so I thought I was fine. I thought it was going to be like a week or two."
Surgery was performed a week later, and hopes of making the opening night roster withered away with the recovery process needing some time.
Kyrou had a goal and two assists in 16 NHL games last season after making the opening night roster. He'll keep gearing himself up and when he gets the chance to come up, he'll hope to stick.
"It obviously sucks," Kyrou said. "I wanted to come in this year, earn a spot and stay here all year, but obviously that's not the way it's going to go right now, so I just need to keep working hard and once I start to play again, I want to do my thing out there, hopefully get called back up and be here for the rest of the year."
So Kyrou began within the last week ramping his practices up. It's unlikely he'll get in a preseason game with three remaining, although that's yet to be determined.
"Not the final gear yet. It's still coming, so I just need to keep working on strength and stuff like that," Kyrou said. "I was playing pretty good all year, but we were doing well and I was doing pretty well. It sucks.
"The last couple days, I've been doing kind of like doing 2-on-2 drills and stuff like that," Kyrou said. "I haven't done anything like full practice, hard-hitting. I kind of want to slowly ease back into that."
|(St. Louis Blues photo)|
Jordan Kyrou continues to rehab his off-season kneecap surgery, ramping
up his practices in recent days.
Kyrou, who said he didn't start skating until early-to-middle August, has been able to work his upper-body throughout the summer, and he's added 12 pounds of muscle (up to 190 from 178).
"I think I've matured a lot and the little things that I've got to do, like the little things along the walls," Kyrou said. "Really it's like the little things and competing harder.
"Last year playing in the 'A,' I learned a lot and also last year being here, I learned a lot. I've learned a lot watching the guys and practicing with them. I think I'm ready to go this year."
* NOTES -- The Blues skated 13 players at Centene Community Ice Center who were not on the traveling roster that were to face the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday night in Calumet, Mi. Among them was forward Ivan Barbashev, who played just 6 minutes 18 seconds in a 2-1 loss to Dallas Tuesday after sustaining a lower-body injury following a hit from behind from Stars defenseman Roman Polak. ... Also, forward Vladimir Tarasenko, who missed three days this week due to illness, skated for a second straight day. ... The lone skater not on the ice was defenseman Robert Bortuzzo. ... Defenseman Carl Gunnarsson did leave a little early but didn't appear to be under any discomfort. ... The Blues will be right back at it on Friday, hosting the Washington Capitals in the final home preseason game before wrapping up preseason play Sunday afternoon at Columbus. The Capitals will open the regular season here on Oct. 2.
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