It was only a matter of time before the St. Louis Blues recalled Scott Perunovich, and that date has finally come. The young defenseman was recalled this morning with the Blues sending Joel Hofer, Dakota Joshua, and Calle Rosen down to make room.
It likely would have been earlier had the Blues not dealt with COVID absences, making their cap situation even more delicate the last several weeks, but the AHL’s best player is finally getting the call. Perunovich has completely dominated the minor leagues this season, recording 20 points in 12 games for the Springfield Thunderbirds. That performance is as a rookie since the 23-year-old failed to suit up even a single time last year due to injury.
The winner of the 2020 Hobey Baker, Perunovich was expected by many to step directly into the NHL upon arrival. While it’s been a long, unexpected wait, it only allowed him to prove once again that he could be one of the most dynamic offensive defensemen at the lower level. Whether he can bring that kind of production to the NHL remains to be seen, but he’ll now finally get the chance.
Given Hofer’s assignment, it’s likely that Ville Husso will also be activated from the COVID protocol in the coming days. The backup netminder has been skating already and only needed to reach a comfortable level of fitness before rejoining the active roster. His absence, and Hofer’s recall, was part of the issue when recalling Perunovich, given the non-roster designation did not remove him from the Blues cap.