© St. Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)
October 16, 2001
Tyson Nash is ready to play, and it looks as if he'll get his chance.
Coach Joel Quenneville said Monday that the Blues were "targeting" Nash to return to action against Dallas on Wednesday. It will be Nash's first game since he hurt his knee on March 22. Nash missed 24 of the Blues' final 26 games last season, plus all 15 playoff games.
"We're getting much closer," Nash said Monday. "It's a matter of days now. ... I'm ready. I feel 100 percent. I've put the ball in their court on the decision."
Quenneville seems ready to put the ball in play.
"He brings a lot of energy to a game," Quenneville said. "Guys recognize that. It raises the intensity level. You want to keep the momentum he brings from shift to shift. He creates that intensity throug hout the room."
While Nash feels he's ready, he knows he hasn't had serious contact since the injury.
"I'm bracing myself because I need to get hit that first time or hit someone that first time," he said. "That will tell me a lot more about where I am."
Winger Scott Young didn't skate on Monday after missing much of Saturday's game at Toronto because of back spasms, but Quenneville said he wasn't sure of his status for Wednesday.
"He felt better today," Quenneville said. "We'll keep a close eye on h im. We don't think it's long term. He wants to get back out there."
Jamal Mayers was back on the ice after missing four practices with a sore groin. He'll be evaluated on Wednesday, and a decision will be made on his status. Mayers has yet to appear in a game this season.
"I felt fine," he said. "We'll see how it responds to activity."
Defenseman Bryce Salvador, who has missed the last two games with a strained right abdominal muscle, said he hopes he will be able to return to action this weekend.
Scott Mellanby skated with the team on Monday and said he should be back in practice on Thursday after getting the wires taken off his broken jaw on Wednesday. He'll wear a protector over his jaw for the first few weeks.
"I'm still 2 1/2 weeks away," he said. "It's been two weeks since the surgery, so I'm a little ahead of schedule."
Mellanby said he has lost only five pounds since getting his jaw broken when he was hit by a shot by teammate Chris Pronger. That's progress, since he had lost six or seven pounds in the first week. He credited the gain to being able to eat soups rather than just protein drinks. Mellanby said his workouts since the injury have been light because his wired jaw gives him trouble breathing.