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Brewer Still Recovering/McClement Signs+Rink Rats!

May 22, 2009, 4:01 PM ET [ Comments]
Andy Strickland
St Louis Blues Blogger •1380 ESPN • RSSArchiveCONTACT
McClement signs 3 yr deal.

$1.4 09-10, $1.45 10-11, $1.5 11-12

Today's story...

Put it this way, the Blues fully plan on having a healthy Eric Brewer for the upcoming 2009-2010 season.

With that being said, it’s never easy to predict how a player will respond from two separate back surgeries, the most recent in early April.

It was a “community decision” between Brewer, the Blues, and obviously his Doctors to move forward with the second surgery which was necessary to relieve pressure off the nerve.

I spoke to Brewer this week who tells me he is waiting to receive clearance from his Doctors to begin therapy. He was originally told he would receive clearance six weeks after surgery which would be next week.

Brewer, who is still dealing with nerve issues that continue to cause numbness in his right leg and foot, says he’s not ruling out the possibility that he may not be ready come training camp.

It goes without saying he would be extremely disappointed if this were the case.

There is nothing the Blues can do but wait and see how nature takes its course. The good news is Brewer is being told he is getting better and on May 22nd that’s really all that matters.

If you saw Brewer walking down the street you would think he’s perfectly fine. He fully believes he’s getting better but he really won’t know until he begins rehabbing and preparing to once again put the skates on and begin hockey related activity.

Over the last several months Brewer has thrown just about every question imaginable at his Doctors including if this injury could jeopardize his ability to play hockey again. Brewer tells me he’s been assured this is not a career threatening injury.

This is obviously great news for the Blues Captain who the Blues certainly missed during their first round playoff series against Vancouver.

The hardest part for Brewer right now is following Doctors orders who have instructed him not to lift anything including his Daughter or even a jug of milk. She can sit in his lap but the former first round pick of the Islanders isn’t allowed to even pick her up out of her crib.

He’s looking forward to that restriction being lifted which could come in the next week or so.

The bottom line is Brewer has time on his side and he has no reason to accelerate the rehab process. The most important thing for Brewer is to take the allowed time to get better and prepare himself both physically and mentally to return where he belongs which is on the ice. We’re all looking forward to seeing the Blues captain back in a Blues uniform come September.

The Blues could have a three year extension in place to re-sign center Jay McClement very, very soon. Expect McClement to earn in the $1.5 million range per season. The former 2nd round pick of the Blues proved this past season that’s he’s capable of playing against opposing teams top players and is a valuable penalty killer who is the first over the boards in PK situations. He’s already played more than 300 games.

Rink Rats!

Is there anything worse than an overbearing hockey parent? As a guy who has been involved in the sport my entire life I can tell you first hand the answer is no. The most recent case is the Father of Jack Johnson who has decided to go out of his way to contact a KHL club to offer up his son’s services.

Johnson becomes a RFA this summer and once his current contract expires he can sign a contract in any other league he wants. If he wants to play in the NHL he has no choice but to play for the Kings unless they elect to trade him.

I’m told Jack wants to play alongside his best friend Sidney Crosby in Pittsburgh. One day he’ll have that option, but as of now he doesn’t. The first mistake Jack made was back in November when he cut ties with Pat Brisson, one of the most respectable agents in the hockey business. Brisson is about as good as it gets when it comes to handling his players.

Is there anybody else who immediately thinks of Mr. Lindross, the father of Eric, when discussing Mr. Johnson?

In fairness I’m told the Kings have never had any issues with Jack who apparently is a great kid and has caused no problems in LA. It goes without saying the Kings will continue to have his rights for the next several years.

Can we say there is no chance the NHL Board of Governors will approve Jim Balsillie attempt to transfer any team to Southern Ontario? This is why there are such things called NHL bylaws that you are supposed to follow. I’m sure there are a lot of NHL Owners that would love to pick up and move a NHL club to Canada where the value of the franchise would immediately skyrocket.

The bottom line is that it’s time for the Phoenix Coyotes to get into the playoffs. If they would find a way to win we probably wouldn’t be having this discussion in the first place.

Is there a better place for Patrick Roy to Coach other than Colorado where he and Pierre Lacroix are about as close as it gets?

Very credible sources tell me Lacroix was upset with Head Coach Tony Granato when Granato refused to take on Pierre’s son Eric as an assistant coach prior to last season. How awkward would it be to have the President’s son working on your staff?

I’m told future Hall of Famer Joe Sakic is leaning heavily towards retirement.

If Scott Niedermayer walks away from Anaheim would the Ducks really consider moving all-world D-man Chris Pronger? I’ll have much more on Pronger in a coming story.

Good to see Toronto forward Jamal Mayers is living back in St. Louis for the summer.

Blues Clues!

Word is the Blues opening games next season in Sweden will not be broadcast locally by Fox Sports Midwest. This does not mean another outlet won’t be picking up the games vs. Detroit.

The Blues prospect camp will take place at the Blues practice facility inside the St. Louis Mills Mall the week of July 6th.

Word is Andy Murray wants Keith Tkachuk to return to the Blues next season.

Erik Johnson, whose knee is at about 95%, will begin skating with the Blues alumni as part of his rehabilitation from knee surgery.

Are the people that run the Fox Theatre so insecure that they really believe re-opening the Kiel Opera House would force them to go out of business?

Didn’t the Scottrade Center recently lose a tenant to the newly opened Chaifetz Arena? Please let me know if the Scottrade Center is going to be shutdown anytime soon.

As I mentioned above Jay McClement is very close to agreeing to a brand new three-year extension with the Blues.

The Blues have yet to engage in any serious talks with D-man Roman Polak regarding an extension.

The Blues are having meetings with their pro scouts this week in St. Louis.

Individual game tix won’t go on sale until the Blues schedule is officially announced.

Tune in to the only year round hockey show in St. Louis each Thursday night from 6-7 on am 590 The Fan KFNS!

More to come,

Andy Strickland

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