The St. Louis Blues started off the 2013 season in a very big way, but no longer can the Blues pretend that they are one of the elite teams in the NHL. While St. Louis Blues fans were sure they had one of the best goaltending tandems in the league, it appears that Brian Elliott has returned to his Ottawa/Colorado form as a streaky back up. While Jaroslav Halak has not been the best either this season, he is the sure number one for a team that claimed to have two starting goalies last season.
The glaring hole in the Blues roster has been their defense. Alex Pietrangelo and Kevin Shattenkirk are great defneseman, but they are more offensively minded and are still growing their games. Roman Polak has looked frusterated on the ice and hasn’t seemed to catch up to the speed of play in the NHL. It might just be a hangover from the lockout, but the Blues can’t afford to wait much longer. Wade Redden has been decent since joining the Blues, but he is getting top pairing minutes and is much better suited as a second or third pairing guy. Barret Jackman is nothing but consistent as he seems to be playing his typical game. It isn’t anything that makes you want to see more of him, but he isn’t the worst either so you are happy he is maintaining. Kris Russell looks like he is playing behind the curve as possibly the Blues worst D-Man and will need to pick up his game to earn playing time. Ian Cole has been decent as well, but Coach Ken Hitchcock does not have the confidence in him to give him a regular role on the team. Cole would have been best suited playing one more year in Peoria, but the St. Louis Blues failed to find a legitimate partner for Alex Pietrangelo.
Right now the NHL’s trade market is one that will require giving up a lot to get a little, but you can still look around the NHL to see what is and might be available. Top level defenseman are specifically at a prime and teams will not want to part with anyone for a reasonable price. With that said, the Blues looked to find a left-handed shooting defenseman with some years under his belt to be a partner to Petro, but GM Doug Armstrong is not going to give up high draft picks or prospects to get a guy at the end of his career.
In Buffalo, Tyler Myers has had the worst start of his career this season both on offense and defense, but a change of scenery may be exactly what he needs. Myers is a big defenseman and could be an interesting addition to the St. Louis Blues. At 6-foot-8-inches, 227 pounds, Myers would add a big body on the blue line which would be a help to the struggling Blues. The once Calder Trophy winning defenseman has been out of the lineup more than once this season as a healthy scratch and don’t seem to need his services. While the Buffalo Sabres probably have zero interest in moving Myers, now might be the time to inquire about his services. The Blues would have to give up a couple high draft picks and a proven forward, but it might be worth the trade if you can get the big, promising defenseman.
Coach Ken Hitchcock loves to work with young players and Tyler Myers could fit right into his game style. If the Blues would be willing to send Matt D’Agostini, a 2nd round pick, and someone like Jeff Woywitka, Buffalo might be willing to listen. D’Agostini would give the Sabres some needed offensive depth, they would get a draft pick the Blues don’t need, and a guy who can be the 7th guy on defense. Or, the Blues could take a chance and send David Perron to the Sabres for Myers. It would be a huge trade and give both teams what they are looking for. While I personally don’t want to see Perron leave St. Louis, it might be enough to get the Sabres to make the move. At least then no one would have to argue over who wears 57…
Although Myers is a right hand shot, I don’t think that Hitch, or anyone in the Blues system, would have a problem pairing Meyers and Pietrangelo together. The two would have the potential to grow into the stars they are and could make some big waves in the Central Division.
Don’t hold your breath though as this is more of a wish than a possibility. The Buffalo Sabres will want to take time with Myers and let him get back on his feet rather than looking to move him.
If you were the GM of the St. Louis Blues, who would you want to look at on defense that might be available? Let us know if the comments below.
LET’S GO BLUES!