The Blues have been plagued by injuries of late, and there was more bad news to report on Saturday as the team placed Alexander Steen on injured reserve with a concussion.
Blues general manager Doug Armstrong made the announcement and said there is no time table for Steen’s return to action.
“I say indefinitely because it could be day-to-day or week-to-week with a concussion,” Armstrong said in a statement, “There’s no set time table.”
Steen has not played since Dec. 21 against Edmonton. He left that game in the second period and did not return. It’s not known when Steen’s injury actually occurred, but the forward was involved in several heavy hits in the two games prior to the Edmonton matchup, including a high hit by Montreal’s Douglas Murray and an illegal check by Ottawa’s Zach Smith. It’s believed that a culmination of hits caused the injury to Steen.
Steen, who has a history with concussions, signed a new contract extension with the Blues a couple of weeks ago. He scored 2 goals on the same day he signed his 3-year extension.
Steen currently leads the Blues in goals (24) and points (38). His 24 goals this season have tied his career high, and Steen was on pace for much bigger numbers.
The Blues’ leading scorer had missed only one game this season prior to Saturday’s matchup against Chicago, but has been absent from the Blues’ practices for the past week. Steen went to see a specialist while the NHL was in the midst of its holiday break. It’s not the first time in his career that Steen has had to visit a neurologist.
Before Saturday, the team was not commenting on the injury, calling it an ‘upper-body’ injury and giving few details surrounding it.
“What we wanted to do before we made any announcements, we wanted to give (Steen) some time to rest,” Armstrong said. “We’re going to want to take our time. We’re hoping that it’s not a long-term thing.”
Steen’s biggest health issues have been related to head injuries. In the 5 seasons he has spent with the Blues, he has never played in more than 72 games in a regular season. He has had at least one other known concussion during his time with the team.
In the 2011-12 season, Steen missed 39 games with a concussion, which sidelined him for the majority of the second half of that season. The timing of this injury comes as a big blow to the Blues, but the team is hoping to have him back sooner rather than later.
In an unrelated move, the Blues also announced on Saturday that they had recalled Sergey Andronov from the American Hockey League under emergency conditions. The Blues appeared to have a couple of sick players, including Derek Roy who was scratched in Saturday’s game, and Andronov was called up as a precaution.
The Blues announced just prior to Saturday’s puck drop that thy were sending Andronov back to the Chicago Wolves.