Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Housley Is Sidelined Indefinitely

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Housley Is Sidelined Indefinitely

Article excerpt

Phil Housley's return to the Blues' lineup has been delayed indefinitely.

Housley suffered another setback before his scheduled departure to join the Blues for their National Hockey League game Saturday night against the Los Angeles Kings at the Forum.

Now, the Blues plan to get another medical opinion to determine why Housley's back problems linger.

"We're contemplating getting additional advice," Blues President Jack Quinn said. "As to who and when, that will be determined Monday."

How much longer Housley will be out of the lineup?

"We'll know more after we get that third opinion," Quinn said.

Housley, 29, has missed 11 consecutive games and 16 overall recovering from back spasms caused by a bulging disc.

The back spasms sidelined Housley for five games from Oct. 28 through Nov. 8. He returned to the lineup for five games, but the spasms recurred in the Blues' 3-3 tie with Calgary on Nov. 18, and Housley hasn't played since.

Initially, the Blues listed him as day-to-day. When the symptoms lingered, Dr. Jerome Gilden, the Blues' orthopedic surgeon, consulted Dr. Keith Bridwell, a spine specialist at Washington University.

They concluded that a regimen of therapy, conditioning and strengthening would be enough to get Housley back in the lineup.

By midweek, he progressed to the point that coach Bob Berry made plans to use him Saturday night.

"I had planned to use him as a seventh defenseman and spot him on the power play," Berry said at the morning skate. "He was supposed to be here, but he's not, so obviously there's been a hitch."

Said assistant coach Ted Sator: "Talk about going from euphoria to reality. We were all under the impression he'd be back any day, but now the No. 1 concern is the health and well-being of Phil Housley."

Quinn agreed.

"This is the first serious injury he's had in his entire career," he said, "and as with all of our players, we want to make sure he's confident he's ready to go. …

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