The St. Louis Blues have been decimated by injuries throughout the season. They were without a number of key skaters for an extended period of time in 2015-16 and they’ve also gone through stretches without both of their goaltenders.
Now, it’s time for St. Louis to get some good news on the injury front, as Brian Elliott has been activated off injured reserve. He’ll be in goal when the Blues take on the Canucks on Saturday night.
The 30-year-old missed 10 games because of a lower-body injury and his return couldn’t have come at a better time. Jake Allen had been outstanding during Elliott’s absence, but he was starting to fade after playing 11 games in a row. Allen has given up nine goals in his last 90 minutes of action.
“You want to get back to your two goalies,” coach Ken Hitchcock said, per The Dispatch. “We’ve been so fortunate because both guys have been on their own and both have played really well. But at the end of the day, when you’re traveling like this and you’re playing this many games, you’re going to get worn down.”
As for Elliott’s teammates, they couldn’t be happier to have him back in the lineup. After all, he was outstanding while taking over for an injured Allen. He went on a 12-3-3 run while allowing two goals or less in 13 of those games.
“He was awesome,” teammate Jaden Schwartz said of Elliott’s impressive run. “He kept us in a lot of games, big, big saves. I don’t know the stats, but he must have been one of the best goalies for the last few months that he was playing. He’s a big piece of our team.”
It’ll be interesting to see how Hitchcock decides to divide the workload between his goalies. The Blues have been able to avoid a goalie controversy because Allen and Elliott haven’t been healthy at the same time in 2016. So, what’s Hitchcock’s plan?
“I don’t really have a plan,” added Hitchcock. “I know that’s probably scary for the fans to hear that, but I don’t really have a plan. I think after 10 games, I’m going to figure it out.”