They sent Blais down when they recalled Schmaltz and Barbashev, which I don't get. Seeing as Blais is a skill player, and not a 3rd line grinder, it should have been a natural fit to slide him into Schwartz's position, since Steen moved to his off-wing when they moved him to the Schwartz-Schenn line. Instead, (not knocking Jaskin's play), they move Jaskin, who is a solid 3rd line player, onto the top line.
Paajarvi-Barbashev-Berglund is a line doing absolutely nothing. Yes, Berglund helps a ton with the penalty kill, but that line isn't generating anything in 5-on-5 play and is more of a 4th line than the Blues actual 4th line.
Even with Jaskin on that top line, the other 3 lines are generating chances. Bad luck in this last game on several of them and ridiculous goaltending on a few of them. However, moving Jaskin down to the 3rd line and putting a skill player in that spot on the top line - we would likely see more impact from that 3rd line, while likely continuing to see chances from the top line. I get why Jaskin is there - he does some thing similar to Schwartz - getting into the zone, arriving on time, attacking the puck, forcing turnovers - etc. Not sure the Blues have that as an NHL ready player in the minors. Blais is more skill than grind and that top line needs someone who can grind.
So I'm basically arguing against myself as to what to do....
That's how important Schwartz is to this team and has been, even over the past 2 seasons. He goes out and the Blues become just above a .500 hockey team.
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