Blues Happy Barret Jackman Might Return, But Not Celebrating

St. Louis Blues Erik Johnson skates through the Atlanta Thrashers defense with the puck during the first period at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis on October 30, 2010.  UPI/Bill Greenblatt Photo via Newscom

Apparently Blues defenseman Erik Johnson started this season wanting to be a top-two defenseman.

Defensemen Roman Polak and Barret Jackman both went down and suddenly Johnson’s wish came true.

Which is why it’s usually safer to wish for money. Or in Johnson’s case, safer golf carts.

Johnson has been solid, with occasional bouts of overwhelmedness.

The good news for the Blues is Jackman could return to the lineup tonight.

With Jackman out, the Blues have been giving up an average of 29 shots a game. The Blues are hoping Jackman’s return will get that number down.

Will all of the defensemen drama, coach Davis Payne, is, in general, OK with the Blues start to this season: “…[we’re] not going to start stringing banners around here, or blowing horns or anything like that because we’ve put ourselves in a good position.”

Are NHL coaches ever ready to string banners? Maybe within 10 minutes of winning the Stanley Cup, but after that, they’re done celebrating. Couldn’t it be effective if a coach embraced party favors?

Obviously, that coach couldn’t be Buffalo’s Lindy Ruff, who’s spent most of this season berating his team, but I like to think there’s some coach out there who’s ready to embrace more frequent celebrations.

The Blues are a solid, well-coached team. Would it really kill Payne to hang a balloon and celebrate that?