Jaskin and the Evolving Bottom Six

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Dmitrij Jaskin filled a useful role and now will take his talents to Capitals’ AHL affiliate.

I’m not surprised to see that Dmitrij Jaskin was claimed by the Washington Capitals. While it’s certainly disappointing to see him go, the Blues have several options on their fourth line as it is. Let’s look at those here.

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Camp so far: Projecting the Forwards

Going into camp, most of the roster that will be on the bench on Opening Day was known. One of the biggest questions that coach Mike Yeo has to answer is: which forwards will earn the last few spots up for grabs.

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Dmitrij Jaskin scored in Sunday’s preseason game against the Columbus Blue Jackets, furthering his campaign to earn a spot in the bottom 6 forwards.

That is not yet determined, but halfway through the preseason schedule, the possible answers are taking shape.

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Beyond Hope Now

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Blues forward Dmitrij Jaskin has disappointed fans and the team alike.

I was very optimistic following the season wherein Dmitrij Jaskin scored 13 goals. That was in the 2014-15 season, and I thought, “here’s a young RW who could anchor the middle 6 for a while.” But it wasn’t to be, and in fact, I’ll say it never will “to be.”

Since that rookie season, Jaskin has 123 games played, and just 5 goals and 25 points to show for it.

That’s, in a word, abysmal.

The Blues’ third line, without Robby Fabbri and Patrik Berglund, isn’t very good. No forward on that line has scored yet this season. In fact, Kyle Brodziak is the only forward in the entire bottom 6 to have a goal this year. All the scoring has come from the top 2 lines and the defense.

Needless to say, that can’t stand if the Blues are to hold sway in the West and go deep in the playoffs. They have to get contribution, and significant at that, from the likes of Magnus Paajarvi, Dmitrij Jaskin, and Vladimir Sobotka. Neither Paajarvi nor Sobotka has a goal yet this season, either.

The Blues have been forced to give a lot of minutes to Jaskin and Paajarvi because, to start the season, an entire line’s worth of forwards was injured. Fabbri is out for the year, Berglund until December, and Steen was out until just recently. So all that’s to say that the Blues can’t be faulted for playing non-producers.

I don’t have much hope anymore that Jaskin will be a point-producer in the NHL. He’s certainly serviceable – he had a very nice pass to set up Jaden Schwartz on of his 3 goals the other night, but a legit 2nd-liner? No way, Jose.

Paajarvi flashed  his ability late last season. He scored at a 20-goal pace, and that had me optimistic he could replicate that over a full season. But here we are 8 games in, and he has zero points.

Shame about it. There’s time for both Jaskin and Paajarvi to turn things around, but if not, we’re likely looking at the last of their time in the Note.

Thanks for reading.