Tyler Bozak, who hasn’t played since March 13, and Torey Krug, who was injured on March 22, both took the ice for the team’s morning skate Friday and could be back in the lineup soon.
“They’re coming along well,” Blues coach Berube said. “I thought they looked pretty good in practice today. So, good to see. I’m not sure the date when they’ll be back yet but it’s getting close.”
Berube said the two needed “contact and things like that, and a real practice, like a full practice. Hopefully soon we get into one and they can join us.”
With the team’s compacted schedule to close the season, there haven’t been many practices lately, but with a rare two-day gap between games coming up, the Blues figure to have one on Monday before flying to Boston for a two-game trip.
When he went out, the Blues said Bozak would be re-evaluated in four weeks, which would be Monday. Bozak has missed 11 games with a lower-body injury.
Krug was described as week to week after he took a whack on the left hand during the Washington game. He has missed eight games.
With no roster limit after the trade deadline, Krug has remained on the active roster so no moves are needed to bring him back. Bozak was placed on long-term injured reserve on March 24 after Krug got hurt so they would have space to call up Calle Rosen from Springfield to give them a seventh defenseman. When Bozak is ready to go, assuming that Krug is ready also, the simplest move would be to send Rosen back to Springfield.
Rosen had played in six consecutive games before being a healthy scratch on Friday to get Niko Mikkola back in the lineup as Berube went with a more physical lineup against the Wild.
Kyrou out again
Forward Jordan Kyrou, who missed the three games on the team’s Canadian trip with an illness, is sick again and missed the Minnesota game on Friday.
Berube said it was different from Kyrou’s previous illness and was similar to the sickness that kept Logan Brown out of two games in January. Kyrou played two games after his absence, scoring a goal against Seattle on Wednesday to snap an 11-game goal-less streak. He went into the Minnesota game leading the team in points with 63.
Alexei Toropchenko moved into Kyrou’s spot and Brown returned to the lineup after three games as a healthy scratch.
The Big 5-0
Brayden Schenn and Ivan Barbashev had assists on Wednesday that gave them each 50 points on the season and gave the Blues six 50-point players. (Kyrou, Robert Thomas, Pavel Buchnevich and Vladimir Tarasenko are the others.) The most recent time the Blues had that many 50-point players was 2002-03, when Pavol Demitra, Al MacInnis, Doug Weight, Cory Stillman, Scott Mellanby and Keith Tkachuk had 50.
Denver and Minnesota State meet for the NCAA hockey championship on Saturday, after Michigan and Minnesota, respectively, lost in the semifinals.
Justin Faulk (and teammate Scott Perunovich) played collegiately at Minnesota-Duluth, which won the NCAA title in 2018 and 2019, but he hasn’t been watching this year’s tournament.
“Duluth is in a rebuilding year,” Faulk said. “They only made it to the last eight. So next year.”
One Blue who figures to have interest in the final is Bozak, who played two seasons at Denver.
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