Saturday, May 15, 2021

Perron added to NHL COVID-19 protocol list

Forward joins Walman, Walker; unknown if it's an actual positive test or if  
false positive, contact tracing; false positive puts doubt in availability for series

MARYLAND HEIGHTS, Mo. -- We now have a pretty good idea why Blues forward David Perron wasn't on the ice Saturday. 
David Perron

Perron was added to the NHL's COVID-19 protocol list, joining defenseman Jake Walman and taxi squad forward Nathan Walker.

Whether Perron received a false positive or an actual positive test remains to be seen, but if the positive test is confirmed, it would put serious doubt on whether Perron, who led the Blues in points (58) and assists (39) this season and became the first Blue since Pavol Demitra in 2002-03 to average more than a point per game (Demitra had 93 points in 78 games), will be available for the playoff series.

The Blues had escaped players missing extended time due to positive COVID tests until Walman missed the final two games. Sanford and Sammy Blais each received a false positive earlier in the season but were cleared to play after each missed a game. Players can also appear on the list due to contact tracing. 

Initially, Blues coach Craig Berube said after practice that Perron was part of a group of players that took a maintenance day as the reason for not skating.

It's not known if Perron was on the flight to Denver Saturday afternoon.

* Forward Vladimir Tarasenko and defenseman Vince Dunn were both full participants in an optional skate that was heavily populated.

Tarasenko has played in just one of the last nine games due to a lower-body injury, and Dunn has missed the past 11 games with an upper-body injury.

Each skater had been skating away from the team the past few days but were on the ice and could be available for Game 1.

"We'll see if they're ready Monday," Berube said. "They could be ready, I'll have to see how they felt today.

"... It wasn't a total full skate. Some guys were off for maintenance, but tomorrow, we'll see them in a full skate in Colorado."

Veterans Justin Faulk, Colton Parayko, Mike Hoffman and Tyler Bozak were the skaters that took a maintenance day and did not skate.

Walman did not make the trip and is unavailable for Games 1-2.

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