Early Injuries Mounting
News around the St. Louis Blues has been almost completely positive as the team has gotten off to one of the best starts in franchise history. The Blues are 6-0-0 at home and have one of the hottest goaltenders in the league through the likes of Jaroslav Halak. Unfortunately, there are plenty of news items that could be reason for concern as the team moves into the full swing of the season.
Injuries - and lots of them.
Roman Polak: Out indefinitely after needing surgery to repair a severed tendon. Out at least eight weeks.
Carlo Colaiacovo: Placed on injured reserve due to a concussion. No specific timetable, could return soon.
Barret Jackman: On injured reserve with a sprained knee. Will be re-evaluated in three weeks.
Other skaters are banged up and on the mend, but these three are the ones that require the most focus. Coincidentally, all of the major injuries on the team are involving defenseman. This means there are plenty of fresh faces patrolling the blueline while Polak, Colaiacovo and Jackman recover.
With Jackman out, the Blues have called up Ian Cole from the Peoria Rivermen. At just 21, Cole is set to get his first taste of action at the NHL level. The youngster was drafted by the organization 18th overall in the 2007 NHL Draft and should be eager to skate at the professional level.
It is tough to lose three of your six starting defenseman, but so far the Blues have been able to overcome every obstacle placed in their path. The question is, how long until these injuries start playing a noticeable role in the team's results? How will the new pieces interact with the current lineup on the ice? We will have to wait and see.
One thing is certain: The Blues can't really afford to lose any more skaters, especially defenseman, to injury until some of their banged up players start returning.
The next few weeks will be a big test for the team that has exploded out of the starting gate. Character and organization will be put to the test as new players attempt to fill the void caused by the injury bug.