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Minus 3 teeth, Johnson expected to play Friday

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Blues defenseman Erik Johnson was absent at practice for the second straight day today, but the club does expect him to be in the lineup Friday.

Johnson lost three teeth in Monday's practice, when a deflected puck hit him in the mouth. He planned to play in Tuesday's game against Colorado, postponing his surgery. But when Tuesday's game was postponed, the defenseman underwent the necessary dental work Wednesday.

The Blues are allowing Johnson to rest following the surgery, but according to Blues coach Davis Payne, he will be available Friday night when the team faces the Edmonton Oilers.

"He had to get some work done yesterday" Payne said. "He's a little sore, but he's expected to go tomorrow."

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COLAIACOVO IMPROVING

Blues defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo skated for the second straight day today, as he recovers from a serious eye injury. but there is no timetable for his return.

Colaiacovo, who was hit in the eye by a puck on Jan. 18, said that doctors told him he escaped a potential career-threatening injury.

"It's one of the scariest things that's ever happened to me," he said today. "At first, you imagine the worst. When you see the amount of blood that came out of my eye, the thought of not being able to see ... the thoughts that go through your head are scary. It made me appreciate the gift of having two eyes. It could have been a lot worse. The doctors told me (if you had to) suffer an injury to your eye, this was probably the best-case scenario."

Colaiacovo did lose vision in his left eye for a few days. It has returned, but he said that it remains blurry. His vision will have to clear up, and he'll have to regain his conditioning before returning to game action. When Colaiacovo does return, he'll be wearing a cage mask.

"For a comfort level, I've been skating with a cage," he said. "It takes a little bit getting used to, but I'm going to play with one on and then put a shield on."

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GOALIE FIGHT

Former Blues goalie Brent Johnson, now with the Pittsburgh Penguins, pitched a 3-0 shutout over the New York Islanders last night. But that's not what everyone was talking about after the game.

They were talking about Johnson's one-punch KO of Islanders goalie Rick DiPietro. If you haven't seen the goalie fight, check it out above on the "Related Videos."

Blues enforcer Cam Janssen saw the video and got a pretty good kick out of it.

"I thought it was great," Janssen said. "DiPietro got in (Matt Cooke's) way. He started that whole thing. Then you could see (DiPietro's) mannerisms. He was looking at Brent Johnson and calls him out. You could see the invitation that he gave to come on down here, and then he kind of lackadaisically goes into the fight and Brent Johnson cocks back and catches him right in the button.

"Obviously DiPietro hasn't fought in a long time or doesn't know what he's doing because he didn't even defend himself. Maybe he thought it was going to be a wrestling match. But Johnson was in it to win it, and he did."

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ODDS AND ENDS

- David Perron was at the rink today and did not say anything about his recovery, other than he's feeling better. He recently returned from a vacation, which he said was good for him to relax.

- Dave Scatchard, who's been out since mid-December with a knee injury, is still experiencing problems with the knee.

- With Andy McDonald returning Friday, here's a look at the Blues' power-play units ... One unit: Brad Boyes, Patrik Berglund, Andy McDonald, Erik Johnson and Alex Pietrangelo ... The other unit: Alex Steen, Nikita Nikitin, Matt D'Agostini, David Backes and T.J. Oshie.

--JR

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