Paul Stastny has a broken foot. Grab a glass and let's soak this post in whiskey covered sadness as a saxophone blasts behind us.
Misery knows no bounds when it comes to the St. Louis Blues. It's the loud drunk in the bar who gets right in your face as you try to watch the television because he wants you to sing karaoke with him. It's the person honking their car after a Cardinal victory even though the two of you are 30 minutes away from the stadium. The injury bug has bitten the Blues again and this time, it's delivered with an extra scoop of "Go Fist Yourself". For the second straight October, Paul Stastny is hurt and will miss significant action.
In the 2014-15 season, Stastny hurt his shoulder on October 18th and missed eight games. Blues fans will forget this because the STL line were reenacting the Magic Man spectacle but it left a lack of depth on the lines, especially when the David Backes-T.J. Oshie-Alex Steen were sleeping through the early part of the schedule. This year, Stastny went down to block a shot on Friday and left the game. He has a broken foot and will miss five weeks at least. Grab a calendar and scratch 35 days off and Stastny will miss roughly 17 games. Let's just say he is being reevaluated on December 1st before a home game against the Florida Panthers. After missing 8 games last season, Stastny will miss double that unless Baby Jesus puts down his bucket of KFC and touches his foot.
Paulie Walnuts is out, folks and the first line is up for grabs again. For my money, Ken Hitchcock will put a little concrete around the STL line again. Forget the fact that Jori Lehtera looked like he was finishing a 26 mile marathon in last night's loss in Montreal and is coming off an injury himself. He will more than likely be reunited for the next five weeks with Jaden Schwartz and Vladimir "I am a bad man" Tarasenko. Goals will be scored. T-shirt sales will rekindle and fans will demand it stays that way even though Stastny was creating magic with Tarasenko and Steen through the first few games.
He may not score enough goals to convince the crowd who only knows the column that reads "goals scored" but Stastny is a playmaker of the highest order. He logs big minutes and makes big plays. He makes other players great and creates action at both ends of the ice. In five games, he had five points but was building chemistry with his linemates and making the Blues a deeper team. Take him away and the Blues line depth looks irregular and weaker.
Yes, they still have Tarasenko which is the equivalent of standing in a desert and screaming, "Look at my fucking cannon!" Where does the line depth go? The Blues are without Patrik Berglund for a few more weeks. Robby Fabbri is out of action with a concussion. Via Jeremy Rutherford from the St. Louis Post Dispatch, no one has been called up yet for Stastny.
Kyle Brodziak and Scott Gomez could see more ice time as a result of Stastny's injuries. Brodziak, acquired in the offseason, had a great game Tuesday night in Montreal, winning 88% of his faceoffs, which led all skaters. Neither replacement will be as influential as Stastny but someone has to step up and answer the call. It's like replacing Ted Drewes with frozen yogurt.
After tallying 46 points and a +5 rating in his first season in St. Louis, big things were expected Stastny. More was expected from the hometown kid. He is the highest paid player on the team at 7 million(a contract that pays him 14.5 million after this season). He will now only play 65 games this season if the injury heals right and he stays healthy. He turns 30 in December. It 's not impossible that he can return to the productivity of his best years in Colorado, but it's a sad dusk nevertheless.
The Blues are off until Saturday, which means I wouldn't hold my breath on a callup for Stastny(who will hit injured reserved). The Blues polished off their toughest road trip in the first month and now enjoy five straight home games, starting with The Islanders Saturday.
For Paul Stastny and the Blues, October is becoming a rough month in their time together.