Sat, 11 Jul 2020

Blues' Bouwmeester done for season, future unclear

Field Level Media
27 Feb 2020, 06:55 GMT+10

St. Louis Blues defenseman Jay Bouwmeester will miss the rest of the season due to the cardiac incident he suffered earlier this month.

It remains unclear if the 36-year-old will be able to return to the ice in the future.

"There's been a lot going on," Bouwmeester said on Wednesday at a pressconference in St. Louis. "(The future) is something I'm definitely going to have to evaluate. Wouldn't say I've done that fully yet. There's decisions I'm going to have to make."

Bouwmeester collapsed during a road game against the Anaheim Ducks on Feb. 11, and doctors used a defibrillator to revive him before transporting him to a nearby hospital.

He later underwent a procedure to implant a cardioverter defibrillator, a device that restores normal heart rhythm.

"It all just came pretty suddenly," Bouwmeester said of the incident that occurred in the first period. "Everything up to that point was normal. I hadn't been sick, or had much going on. It was completely out of the blue."

Bouwmeester said he was conscious by the time the ambulance reached UC Irvine Medical Center in Orange, Calif.

Though he still didn't know what happened at the Honda Center in Anaheim, he was able to talk and ask questions at the hospital.

Bouwmeester said he is amazed by the number of people who have reached out to him.

"The outreach and support people have shown has been pretty overwhelming," Bouwmeester said. "Where this took place and the people that were around at the time, as well as my dad being there on the trip, there were a lot of things that were absolute best-case scenario."

The game was postponed after the incident. It will be played March 11. The game will begin with the score tied at 1, as it was at the time of the postponement. It will follow a full 60-minute format, however.

Bouwmeester is scheduled to become a free agent after the season. Blues general manager Doug Armstrong said there will be discussions over the summer.

"Jay and I have spoken over the last week or so," Armstrong said at the press conference. "We both understand that he won't participate in the regular season or playoffs for us. We talked about longer-term things that may or may not happen. We both feel, it's February, we don't have to make long-term decisions at this point.

"He's going to take time, get back in with his family and be around the team and he'll address those things as the summer progresses."

Meanwhile, Bouwmeester has been told by doctors that he can live a "pretty normal life."

"It was a scary thing," Bouwmeester said while reflecting on his collapse. "But everything has been going pretty good lately."

Bouwmeester is in his 17th NHL season, and he was acquired by the Blues in the 2012-13 season. He helped the Blues win the Stanley Cup last year.

In a 1,240-game career that has included stints with the Florida Panthers (2002-09) and the Calgary Flames (2009-13), Bouwmeester has 88 goals and 336 assists. He appeared in all 82 games for seven consecutive seasons, from 2005-12.

This season, Bouwmeester has one goal and eight assists in 56 games. His average of 21 minutes, 17 seconds of ice time per game ranks third on the Blues.

The Panthers made the Edmonton, Alberta, native the third overall pick in the 2002 draft.

--Field Level Media

More California News

Access More

Sign up for California State News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!