Monday, November 29, 2021


Perron returns to rink, not skating however, doubtful for Tuesday; 
Brown to make Blues debut; Scandella could be a healthy scratch

ST. LOUIS -- The good news for David Perron is that he was at the rink Monday.

The bad news for David Perron is he didn't practice, which means he is doubtful for Tuesday's heavyweight matchup against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Perron, who was injured in the first period of a 3-2 overtime loss against the Chicago Blackhawks after he was hit by Blackhawks defenseman Jake McCabe, hitting his head on the plexiglass behind him. 

"He came in today, did some light workout stuff, but that's where he's at right now," Blues coach Craig Berube said. "Nobody knows, right? The only person that knows is the person himself. We'll see what happens with that."

Perron, who has 18 points (seven goals, 11 assists) in 20 games, skated off on his own but left the ice and did not return; he also missed Saturday's 6-3 win against the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Perron, who has a history of concussions and/or concussion-like symptoms, is officially day to day but the fact he's around the rink already and doing things is a good sign this one may not be as serious as previous ones.

"Yeah, right now," Berube said. "I really don't talk to him day to day and ask him how he is because if that was me and I were to be in his shoes, that would be irritating. I let him do his thing, I talk to Ray Barile, the trainer, he gives reports on him and I more or less talk to David, just small talk, right?"

The Blues have the luxury of filling the need of a top-six forward on the wing with Perron out. Natural center Brayden Schenn has done this before, moving to the wing out of necessity, and did so again Saturday moving up and playing with Ryan O'Reilly and Jordan Kyrou.

"With Perron out and stuff, that changes things a little bit," Berube said. "O'Reilly and Schenn have played together before and they've done well. I want to keep using 'Sunny' as much as I can in the middle of the ice. I think it's easier for him right now with his injuries and things like that; they're not injured anymore, but just coming (back). He is good down the middle, he does a good job of defensive side of things and stuff like that. But I've got options with Schenn and we'll just see how it goes. I like that line, (Oskar) Sundqvist, (Ivan) Barbashev and (Brandon) Saad. When guys come back, I'll have to move guys around again, but I do like that line."

Sundqvist has two assists in seven games since returning from ACL surgery and surgeries to both hips, but Berube finds it more beneficial to keep Sundqvist down the middle rather than on the wing, which he's also done in the past.

"He can kind of stay on the move a little more, be more in the middle of the ice, but him and 'Barby' are kind of a hybrid, they take draws on whatever side," Berube said. "It's kind of a good luxury to have, two centermen that can take draws and both play center."

* Brown to make Blues debut -- St. Louisan Logan Brown appears set to make his Blues debut on Tuesday.

Brown, 23, recalled from the Springfield Thunderbirds of the American Hockey League on Sunday after the Blues put Klim Kostin (upper-body) on long-term injured reserve, skated on a line with Tyler Bozak and Dakota Joshua.

Brown, the 11th pick in the 2016 NHL Draft who was acquired from the Ottawa Senators along with a 2022 conditional pick for Zach Sanford on Sept. 25, put up 17 points (six goals, 11 assists) in 19 games in Springfield.

Brown was sent to the AHL out of camp, and Berube cited that he wanted to see Brown gain his confidence back and it appears he has.

"He looked more confident to me," Berube said. "He looked stronger than he did at training camp, he looked quicker, more direct with the puck. It was good stuff. He's played really well down there. I'm looking forward to seeing him.

"... I don't know if you tell him how you want him to play, I think you let the kid play the way he's capable of playing, but you've got to play the system and how we want to play more than anything. He's a big body. We like to forecheck, get on the forecheck, use your big body. He's got good hands, he's always had good hands and use your ability when you get the puck in the offensive zone to get to the net and things like that. A big body like that, you shoukd be at the net a lot, rebounds and things like that. He has the capability of scoring in those situations because of his hands."

* Scandella to sit? -- Based on line rushes and defensive pairings Monday at practice, veteran defenseman Marco Scandella could be on the outside looking in.

Scandella was paired with Jake Walman as the extra d-pairing in practice with Niko Mikkola and Colton Parayko skating as one pair, Torey Krug and Justin Faulk as another and Scott Perunovich and Robert Bortuzzo as the third d-pairing.

The 31-year-old Scandella has four assists in 21 games this season but no points in the past 15 games and is a minus-5 in that stretch.

"That's a decision I'll make tomorrow," Berube said. "It's possible."

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