St. Louis Blues head coach Craig Berube said Sunday that he expected defenseman Colton Parayko and forwards Brayden Schenn and Vladimir Tarasenko to return to the lineup for Monday night's game against the Nashville Predators.
Then on Monday morning, he not only confirmed their return, but also announced that of two others, forwards David Perron and Logan Brown.
Parayko, Schenn and Tarasenko were all in COVID protocols but resumed skating in recent days. Brown, who has missed the Blues' last two games with a non-COVID illness, also skated Sunday, while Perron did not return to the ice until Monday's morning skate, where he showed that he was good to go against Nashville.
The Blues, who were also without forwards Pavel Buchnevich and Perron due to COVID protocols in Saturday's loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs, will certainly be glad to welcome a few regulars back to the lineup as they face the Predators, who are tied for first with Colorado in the Central Division, two points ahead of St. Louis.
Parayko leads all Blues skaters in average time on ice at 24:10 per game, and his return should add some stability back to a Blues defensive corps that allowed six goals against Toronto. Schenn has played just 22 games due to injuries and COVID but is one of the team's most well-rounded forwards, and Tarasenko has been one of the Blues' most indispensable forwards, tallying 34 points in 34 games.
Perron has 20 points (eight goals, 12 assists) in 25 games this season, below his point-a-game average last season. But before being held without a point in his last three games before testing positive, the 33-year-old veteran had recorded points in six out of seven games.
Brown has no points in his last six games but has brought an intriguing mix of offensive skill and physicality since being promoted from the Blues' AHL affiliate in Springfield in late November. He has six points in 15 games this season.
Rookie defenseman Scott Perunovich will not play Monday after returning to action Saturday following a stretch on the COVID list. He is nursing an injury.
The game Monday night will be preceded by the retirement ceremony of Chris Pronger's No. 44 Blues jersey. Coverage begins at 6 p.m. on Bally Sports Midwest.