On March 21st, it appeared Doug Armstrong had a mission for the Blues: bolster the Blues’ defense. Fans were hard pressed to disagree; the defense has been inconsistent at best this season, and a long playoff run is very much contingent upon the team clicking at all levels.
Armstrong dealt Oskar Sundqvist and Jake Walman to the Detroit Red Wings for Nick Leddy and depth defenseman Luke Witkowski. Leddy has a reputation of being a solid and effective defenseman, especially going back to his tenure with both the Blackhawks and Islanders. His tenure with the Red Wings, however, had not been as successful. He finished his time in Detroit with a goal, 15 assists, and a -33 rating in 55 games.
To say Blues fans weren’t thrilled with the acquisition of Leddy is an understatement:
Indifferent to ok is probably the spectrum that the deal landed on.
Armstrong approached the deadline with a hesitancy to mortgage the Blues’ future on a big name rental, and for the price, Leddy was probably the best he could swing. Is it enough?
With Torey Krug injured nearly immediately after acquiring Leddy, it’s tough to tell. So far with the Blues, Leddy has been playing well. He has notched a goal and two assists in seven games.
The team’s defense, though, has yet to coalesce into something resembling effectiveness, giving up more than three goals in five of six games since Leddy’s debut on March 24th.