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Injured defenseman Torey Krug was on the ice with the Blues on Monday for the first time since he was hurt in Game 3 of the Minnesota series, though his return does not seem imminent. He skated in the warmup period of the morning skate. But when the team started skating harder, he didn’t take part in those.

“It’s good he’s out there, so he’s doing a lot better,” Blues coach Craig Berube said. “I wasn’t sure if he was going to skate today or not. It was good to see him skate and we’ll keep going. Same as (Marco) Scandella. He’s closer.”

Scandella was a more active participant in practice but also isn’t ready to return. Berube said Krug skated for the first time on Sunday.

“It’s good,” said forward David Perron. “I have great chemistry with him on the power play and he’s obviously a guy we miss a lot, I miss him a lot; he gives me a lot of good looks all over the ice. He’s been a great power-play guy his whole career and it’s great to see him on the ice.”

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Krug was injured on May 6 and has missed seven games. Scandella last played on May 8 and has missed six games.

Krug’s return to skating gave the Blues nine defensemen on the ice in the morning skate, and seven of them played on Monday night. They’ve had 10 defensemen skate with the team in the playoffs; Steven Santini was called up from Springfield to start the series but has returned to the American Hockey League.

“On the backend especially,” Berube said, “you’re probably very vulnerable to losing ‘D’ in a playoff series. It’s nice to have eight and nine guys around that can step in and play and do a good job for you.”

Game 5 start time set

Tampa Bay’s surprising sweep of Florida in the second round is good news for Blues fans. Because that series has been playing on the same day as the Blues-Avalanche series, it means the Blues’ Game 5 will be the only game on Wednesday, and now that it’s not part of a doubleheader, the start time will be a little after 7 p.m. (St. Louis time). That will also be the start time for Game 6, if necessary, on Friday at Enterprise Center.

The contests will be televised on TNT.

That ends the Blues run of late starts. Eight of the Blues’ 10 postseason games so far have started at 8:45 or later. (As was the case Monday, it’s usually been 8:50.) The only exceptions have been weekend games: The Blues got a 3:40 p.m. start in the Minnesota series and the 7:15 p.m. start for Game 3 of the Colorado series.

The late starts are done for this postseason. If the Blues were to beat the Avalanche and get to the conference final, the schedules for the two conferences will be staggered, so they’ll be the Blues would be in the only game on whatever night they play.

Up and about

Colorado defenseman Samuel Girard, who broke his sternum when checked into the boards in Game 3, showed up at Enterprise for the morning skate on Monday and watched from the bench.

“He’s a little sore today,” Colorado coach Jared Bednar said, “but good to see him up and about and in good spirits and here with the guys for sure.”

Veteran defenseman Jack Johnson took his spot. It was his first game this postseason, but he played in 74 games in the regular season before getting crowded out of the lineup at the end of the season.

Colorado made one volitional lineup change, putting forward Alex Newhook in for the first time this postseason and sitting Andre Burakovsky.

The Blues made no lineup changes other than replacing injured goalie Jordan Binnington with new arrival Charlie Lindgren.

Well maintained

Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog didn’t take part in his team’s morning skate, taking a maintenance day, as he has done throughout the playoffs. It sounds as if there isn’t a whole lot of science to it.

“This time of year it’s about being ready for the game,” he said. “Really that’s what it comes down to. You want to feel good come puck drop, and that’s really the focus and we’ve been playing well and we’ve been winning and there’s some superstition in there probably.”

Nelly handled the ceremonial big drum banging before Game 4.

• The Blues have had five players appear in their first NHL playoff game this season: Scott Perunovich, Alexei Toropchenko, Dakota Joshua, Calle Rosen and Ville Husso. Two other players on the current roster, forward Logan Brown and goalie Charlie Lindgren, have yet to appear in a postseason game.

• When Gabriel Landeskog scored Saturday to give Colorado a 4-2 lead, with assists from Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen, it was the 14th time in the postseason those three had teamed up to score a goal, the sixth-most times it’s happened in NHL history. The trio of Glenn Anderson, Mark Messier and Craig Simpson holds the mark of 24 goals, edging out another Edmonton trio, Paul Coffey, Wayne Gretzky and Jari Kurri. …

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