SPORTS

Martin Brodeur takes ice with Blues in morning skate, eager to show he can still play

11/28/2014 05:03 EST | Updated 01/28/2015 05:59 EST
ST. LOUIS - Martin Brodeur took the ice Friday at the St. Louis Blues' morning skate, eager to show he still can play at a top level.

"It was good. It was fun to get back out there for sure," the 42-year-old goalie said. "It's been a while. It was a good tempo for me. I know it's only a morning skate ... can't wait to see Monday. Everything's new. Everybody's kind of looking at me a little bit. That's going to phase out pretty quick."

Brodeur spent the last 21 seasons with the New Jersey Devils and leads the NHL in wins (688), games played (1,259), losses (394) and shutouts (124). He joined the Blues on a tryout basis.

Blues general manager Doug Armstrong called Brodeur's agent, Pat Brisson, on Tuesday after the Blues' 3-2 shootout loss to the Ottawa Senators, a game in which starting goalie Brian Elliott sustained a lower-body injury. Elliott is on injured-reserve and is listed as week-to-week.

"He's going to practice with us for the better part of a week and then I would say we'll make a determination," Armstrong said. "He'll find out where he's at and we'll have a chance to work with him and make a decision on whether we'll move forward with a contract or not.

"... (Brodeur) wants to play, and he's kept himself in good conditioning. He's been skating in New Jersey. We were a team that he reached out to."

Brodeur has been skating with another NHL player looking for work, Scott Gomez, in hopes of landing a contract after the Devils chose not to resign him this past summer and he became a free agent.

Brodeur said he got the call from a team he had at the top of his list.

"I think for me, looking at teams, it was the most similar what I'm used to, what I've played throughout my career in New Jersey," Brodeur said about St. Louis. "St. Louis was one of the teams that was really interesting for me, especially with (Blues coach Ken Hitchcock) being the coach and being familiar with him was something that was important. The opportunity wasn't there in the summer, wasn't there early, wasn't there three days ago. It just happened a couple days ago. I'm definitely looking forward to this challenge and see where that's going to bring us. ... There were some teams that called, but this was really at the top of my list."

Brodeur was 19-14-6 last season with a 2.51 goals-against average and .901 save percentage, low numbers by his career marks of 2.24 GAA and .912 save percentage.

"It was a tough year last year for me," Brodeur said. "I felt really good playing the games but didn't get really the chance to play the way I'm used to playing in New Jersey and rightfully so with Cory Schneider being there. They needed to put him in some games and lock him into a long-term contract. For me, it was important to get out of the way.

"The Devils have been really good to me and they'll be good to me in the future also. For me to move on and get another opportunity with a team that has a chance to win the Stanley Cup was one of my goals. Today's the first day of hopefully something good."

Hitchcock has spent three Winter Olympics with Brodeur and the 2004 World Cup of Hockey.

"He looks good," Hitchcock said. "We'll get a better test on Monday and Tuesday when we put him in a full practice. Eddie Belfour played 30 in a row at the same age. It's more what Marty's standard is. We'll get a good read on that."

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