David Perron Set to Rejoin the Blues | Camp Crew Trimmed to 29

By Jeff Quirin
NHL Hot Stove Associate Editor and St. Louis Blues Correspondent

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Nearly a year has passed since San Jose Sharks captain Joe Thornton delivered an illegal blindside head shot to David Perron. Since November 4th, 2010 Perron has not played a minute of NHL action. Post concussion symptoms forced the dynamic playmaker to miss the remainder of the 2010-11 season. Thought his status never regressed, his improvement has been tediously slow. So much so that in August St. Louis Blues General Manager Doug Armstrong declared that Perron would not be ready for training camp. Reasserting the line that “when he is ready to rejoin the team, an announcement will be made.”

On Sunday afternoon Armstrong announced that the announcement is coming Monday.

St. Louis Blues Executive Vice President and General Manager Doug Armstrong announced Sunday that injured forward David Perron will rejoin the team on Monday.

Excellent news, but little details lead to many questions. Most of which will be answered at 11:00 am Central when both Perron and Armstrong will be available to the media to discuss his return.

There is no possible way of knowing when Perron will play again, but it’s the top question on everyone’s mind. One thing is for sure, he wants to be back more than anyone else. The kid eats, sleeps, breathes, lives the game of hockey. But he also knows that the journey back to his life’s passion is far from over. Monday is just but another milestone marking the trials he has faced. Working himself back in to game shape will take precedent over all other tasks till he is ready for the next.

As excited as all hockey fans are to see another return from the darkness of concussions, exercising a little caution is warranted. Let’s hear what Perron has to say and find out where his head is at before worrying about which contest will be his first in a long while.

In other Blues news…

Another round of training camp cuts have been announced. All will ship off to the the Blues AHL affiliate, Peoria Rivermen. Their training camp starts Monday. A total of 29 are left in camp with approximately six cuts to go before the final 23 will be finalized. Those driving three hours north are Jonathan Cheechoo, T.J. Hensick, Brett Sterling, Jake Allen, Jay Barriball, Mark Cundari, Cade Fairchild, Kyle Hagel, Anthony Nigro, Anthony Peluso, Brett Ponich and Danny Syvret.

Left on the battle bubble are Evgeny Grachev, Phil McRae, Chris Porter, Ryan Reaves, Ian Cole, Ben Bishop and Brian Elliott.

In any of the the six training camps between the lockout and this year the play of Grachev and McRae would have earned them a roster spot outright. But the Blues have added a plethora of veteran depth and ultimately prefer beginning professionals to play full time in the AHL rather than toil away in practices only to sit in the press box most nights. The two powerful forwards are still fighting for priority on the recall pecking order.

Porter and Reaves are set to take the 22nd and 23rd lineup openings for the October 8th season opener. Cole would be in contention, even though he is a defenseman, if he wasn’t in the same age and experience bracket as Grachev and McRae. The brass really wants him to log heavy minutes in all situations to further his development.

Elliott and Bishop have been neck and neck so far in the race to backup Jaroslav Halak. Elliott may have allowed an opening to be exploited with a not so sharp performance in Dallas Saturday.

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Thanks for reading. Check NHL Hot Stove on Monday for more news and thoughts regarding David Perron.

As always you’re welcome to foll me on Twitter: @JTQ_1.