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Magnus Paajarvi’s earned a roster spot


Toronto Maple Leafs v St. Louis Blues

Doug Armstrong yesterday spoke about a new, young core for the Blues heading forward. Apparently for the forseeable future, Magnus Paajarvi is part of that core.

"We made two transactions. We sent (Ivan) Barbashev and (Zach) Sanford down and recalled them (immediately) after," Armstrong said. "By doing that, it allows them to be American Hockey League eligible if necessary, but we didn't do that with Magnus Paajarvi. He's going to be with us the rest of the year and he's excited about that."

Paajarvi has split his time between the Chicago Wolves and the Blues this season. He has seven goals and 11 assists in 26 games played. With the Blues, he has four goals and an assist in 12 games played.

That’s a total of 38 games played this season. When he hasn’t been in Chicago, he’s been warming up the press box, but he’s gotten increased playing time under Mike Yeo at the expense of Nail Yakupov and Dmitrij Jaskin. He scored a goal Sunday in the Blues’ 4-2 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks.

Paajarvi isn’t awful (his shooting percentage this season in a small sample size is a little over 18%, well above his career shooting percentage of 7.6%), but he’s not a player that should be a part of a core group, short term or long term. He’s been a yo-yo since being acquired for David Perron back in 2013, and has never come close to Perron’s production.

Mike Yeo is impressed with Paajarvi’s “speed.”

Paajarvi is a RFA at the end of next season and probably won’t get much of a raise over his current $700,000 salary. He probably won’t be protected for the expansion draft, either, so the Blues will either lose him this off-season or re-sign him for a smidge more to keep Armstrong’s collection of third-liners complete.