Blues F Andy McDonald returns after missing 51 games with concussion

ST. LOUIS – Blues forward Andy McDonald has been activated from injured reserve after missing 51 games with a concussion and is expected to play Sunday night against the San Jose Sharks.

“It’s been kind of a tough recovery,” McDonald said after the morning skate. “Obviously a long time, but I’m excited that this day is finally here. Get in the game, play the game and not think, that’ll be the key.”

The Blues also placed forward Matt D’Agostini on injured reserve with a concussion sustained last week in Ottawa. D’Agostini has missed the last two games.

The 34-year-old McDonald, who has two assists in three games, was injured Oct. 13 in Dallas. He’s been skating on a regular basis since Dec. 23.

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Coach Ken Hitchcock, hired to replace Davis Payne in November, said he wasn’t that familiar with McDonald’s game.

“I’m curious because he looks so good at practice. Can you carry that over when you’re playing against different sweaters right off the bat?” Hitchcock said. “We’ll just play him on a regular shift, play him on the power play and see how he looks.”

Forward Alex Steen has been out with a concussion since Dec. 27.