As he closes in on his two-year anniversary as Blues head coach, Craig Berube hasn't actually coached much hockey lately.
Since the NHL's original coronavirus "pause" on March 12, the Blues have been active for only five weeks over the last eight months. You know, practices, meetings, games.
That little stretch of play occurred from mid-July to late August when the team held a training camp and then headed to the Edmonton bubble for the completion of the 2019-20 season.
It's now closing in on three months since their first-round playoff loss there to Vancouver, so Berube is antsy.
"Yeah I am a little bit," Berube told the Post-Dispatch. "I sure miss it, that's for sure. Just the daily routine of every day, coming in and being around the guys. I like my job. I like what I do, being around the game.
"When you're not and it's taken away from you like it is right now, it's tough."
Berube has spent most of the down time with his family back at his permanent residence outside Philadelphia. He was in St. Louis for the draft and the start of free agency in early October, then went back to Pennsylvania where his days — once again — have included cooking breakfast every day for everyone and keeping an eye on the kids during their virtual schooling.
"I monitor things, make sure they're doing their work and they're not in their phones," said Berube, who was scheduled to return to St. Louis this week.
This sounds similar to how Berube spent last spring and early summer — a strange sort of limbo where players and coaches weren't sure whether the season would be concluded or just canceled.
But this time is different, Berube said.