The future Hall of Famer has visited Nassau Coliseum on many occasions, but only ever wearing the red and black of the New Jersey Devils. On Saturday afternoon Brodeur made his first appearance with the St. Louis Blues and helped propel them to a 6-4 win over the Islanders.
Brodeur came into the game in the second period after Jake Allen allowed three goals in the opening 20 minutes. The newest member of the Blues made 14 saves and allowed only one goal in relief.
Saturday afternoon was the first time since January 8, 2011 that Brodeur entered a game in relief of another goalie.
“I didn’t expect to play,” Brodeur told a throng of reporters gathered around his stall after the game. “To be able to come in and the team respond the way they did definitely makes me feel good. I didn’t get much work, but in the third there were a couple close ones.
“It’s nice. First win out of the way so definitely excited about that.”
On Tuesday, Brodeur signed a one-year contarct with the Blues and made his first start with the club on Thursday. St. Louis fell 4-3 to the Nashville Predators in a game where Brodeur made 20 saves on 24 shots.
It was the first game in Brodeur’s career that he wore a jersey other than the Devils.
“It was weird,” Brodeur said about wearing a Blues’ jersey for the first time. “You can’t hide it. It’s something that for 20 years I did the same thing over and over again and that was a change.
“It was a little weird, but I got used to it now and I’m very excited to be here.”
The Blues have already made trips to Madison Square Garden and Prudential Center – both victories for St. Louis – so any hopes of Brodeur playing his former team or its biggest rival will not be fulfilled.
Brodeur played his last NHL game with the Devils back on April 13 against the Boston Bruins. New Jersey won that game 3-2 and Brodeur was given a loud ovation as he left the ice for the final time.
The nearly-lifetime Devil said that people inside the Devils organization – including GM Lou Lamoriello – were happy for him that he has found somewhere to play this season.
“I talked to [Lamoriello] before I signed and he was really happy” Brodeur said. “Like he said, ‘our relationship is something that I care about.’ His input is really important and he’s really excited about this opportunity for me. And see where that’s going to bring me.”
He added that he has heard from a lot of the players, who are also happy for him.
Brodeur has been waiting for contract offers since the offseason and admittedly did wonder at times if one would ever present itself.
“There’s weeks, there’s days where you don’t feel as good,” he explained. “It’s like anything. It’s like anybody’s life. It’s tough sometimes when you expect to get something and you’re not getting it. It got a lot easier towards the end because there a lot more interest from teams calling.
“It made me stay more focused about getting back and it finally happened.”
What happens when Brian Elliot returns to the Blues roster is unclear, even to Brodeur. Elliot has been out with a lower body injury and does not appear to be close to returning.
Brodeur said that he and the team will figure out a plan when Elliot does return.
“There are a lot of things that could happen between now and then,” he said. “Even when he is back. I didn’t force anybody to sign me. They wanted me to be here and I want to be here also. We’ll see where that’s going to bring us, but that’s really in the unknown.”
For now, Brodeur can enjoy his first win in his only trip back to an area he has spent his entire NHL career knowing in a different uni.