With July 1 almost at hand, the St Louis Blues 1st and 4th lines are all but complete. The biggest questions that loom out there (within the Blues control) currently are of marquee players Kevin Shattenkirk and Jaden Schwartz. For number 17 is it not of when he will be resigned, but for how much and the term. With a recent signing of Filip Forsberg for $6m x 6 years now complete by the Nashville Predators, you can expect for General Manager, Doug Armstrong and company to use this a measuring stick for Schwartz’s new contract.
With this being said, it’s now down to the younger, depth of the lineup that has the bigger questions. And who better to address than some players who have been in and out of the lineup and who have the most at stake this year. For it could mean the end of their time in St Louis.
RW Drafted in 2011 at 32 overall.
NHL career 25 games 8 points (4 goals 2 assists in 13 games throughout 2015-16 season) He has averaged just .32 points per game for his NHL career
AHL career 193 games with 69 goals and 67 assists and .70 points per game.
Ty has shown great promise, tenacity, and a strong desire to have the puck on his stick. I’ll say he gets resigned to a 1-2 year, 2-Way deal. You can only hope that he gets a chance (and with a strong camp) at the big leagues this year to prove his worth on the 3rd line. His strong scoring ability leaves Blues fans hungry for another scoring forward to add to the lineup.
RW Drafted 2011 at 41 overall
2015-2016 season 13 points in 65 games, .2 points per game. 2 points in 6 playoff games, .33 points per game.
Jaskin is certainly a player that a lot of Blues fans are waiting to kick it into 4th gear (or hoping it exists at the NHL level). Jaskin has shown signs of brilliance in his shot and big bodied plays, but like several players on this roster, just can’t seem to always find the back of the net. Currently at 23 years of age, Jaskin now holds a 2 year contract at $1,000,000 per season. Very reasonable.
Within the last few seasons, Jaskin has done very well for himself progressing with 2 points in 18 games in 2013-14, while scoring 29 in 42 at the AHL level along with 9 points in 9 games in the playoffs ; 2014-15 season scoring 18 points for the Blues, 15 in 18 games for the Wolves; and 2015-2016, regressing slightly with 13 points in 65 games in the NHL, 2 points in 3 games in the AHL. Along with Rattie, this is a “must win” upcoming season for Jaskin.
LW Drafted 2009 at 10th overall by Edmonton Oilers
Finished his 2015-16 season with 9 points in 48 games and a -9 rating .1875 points per game. Not pretty. Notably that his NHL career currently sits at 276 games played, a mere 80 points tallied and equals out to .29 points per game, along with a -38 overall +/- rating.
Pääjärvi’s game has gotten better as his career and development has come along, however, his defense still lacks. With a good frame on him and good skill set, Magnus has the ability to play up and down the lineup but certainly lacks where a Top 10 player should be considered. Noteable forwards that went after Pääjärvi in the first round were: Zack Kassian at 13, Chris Kreider at 19, Marcus Johansson at 25. Pääjärvi has been good for what the Blues have needed him to be in his small role, and arguably played too much over Jaskin. I look for the Blues to let Pääjärvi fall to Free Agency July 1st.