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Blues’ Pronger Rebounds From Injury

May 11, 1998 GMT

DETROIT (AP) _ St. Louis defenseman Chris Pronger was released from a hospital Monday, one day after being struck in the chest by a hockey puck and collapsing during a playoff loss to Detroit.

The team captain spent a restful night under observation before secretly being cleared from Henry Ford Hospital about 10 a.m. EDT to avoid reporters, hospital spokesman Dwight Angell said.

``He just wanted to go quietly without speaking with the media,″ Angell said.

Pronger was hurt with 16:08 remaining in Detroit’s 6-1 victory Sunday in Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinal series. He was struck hard in the chest by a shot from Red Wings’ defenseman Dmitri Mironov, then slumped to the ice.

Pronger was fitted with a cervical collar and lifted onto a stretcher, which was then rolled to a nearby ambulance. The game, with Detroit leading 4-1, resumed after about a 10-minute delay.

``But he came to during the ride to the hospital and was very talkative and his vital signs were stable at that point,″ Blues internist Dr. William Birenbaum said Sunday.

Although St. Louis’ medical staff said it might be possible for Pronger to be ready Tuesday, Blues coach Joel Quenneville has said he wanted to wait to see how Pronger was feeling.

``It’s way too premature to guess on something like that,″ Quenneville said Sunday. ``I just know he’s a very competitive kid.″