The St. Louis Blues had an early, optional practice Saturday morning. After that skate, the team announced that Zach Sanford has been moved to injured reserve. This is despite the fact that Sanford took part in practice, albeit showing up late. Sanford has been in concussion protocol for a few days, after being on the receiving end of a nasty hit against the New York Islanders. Casey Cizikas delivered the hit halfway through the third period. A groggy Sanford then struggled to make his way off the ice, eventually being helped by the team’s trainer.
The practice also had Alexander Steen and Tyler Bozak taking part, two players who have been held out of multiple games with injuries. It’s expected that Steen, who has suffered from a shoulder issue, will be activated off of IR after Sanford was placed on it. This will be a game-time decision. Bozak still looks to have a few more days of recovery, although the team said they hoped he would play before the All-Star break.
David Perron was also held out of Saturday’s practice. The winger, who is currently on a league-high 13-game point streak, is said to be day-to-day with an undisclosed injury.
Zach Sanford Placed on IR; More Injury News for St. Louis Blues
#stlblues put Sanford on IR, which means likely Steen will be activated.
— Lou Korac (@lkorac10) January 19, 2019
Sanford has seen increasing ice time with the Blues in recent games. The 24-year-old has 11 points in 30 games this year. In his last six games, he’s averaged middle-of-the-pack ice time but has been held off the scoresheet. Still, the Blues have been using Sanford in many different roles this year. For a bit, he was the team’s go-to when they needed a strong winger when a player needed to step up. Now, Oskar Sundqvist has taken that role. That leaves Sanford apart of the crowd of Blues players fighting for consistent ice time this year.
Another takeaway from Saturday’s practice is the benching of Joel Edmundson in Saturday’s game against the Ottawa Senators. When asked about it, head coach Craig Berube simply said, “I have seven healthy defensemen. I’m going to play six tonight.” Edmundson currently has seven points in 41 games. This ranks him fifth among the eight defensemen that have skated with St. Louis this year.
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