The Russians: The Nice List
Buchnevich has been one of the best and most balanced forwards the Blues have had this season. His game in his own end looks incredibly similar to that of Ryan O’Reilly‘s, but his offensive potential is greater than the Blues’ captain.
He was even placed on a line with O’Reilly and David Perron when the season started. Still, after headbutting an Arizona Coyote early in the year, Buchnevich has found his niche in St. Louis with two countrymen.
Vladimir Tarasenko made headlines this summer after requesting a trade from the Blues due to his displeasure with how his shoulder surgeries were handled. Now, it seems like the Blues would not be where they are today without him.
He still has not returned to the former Trasenko that netted him this big contract that still has one year left on it, but he has been a very productive player for St. Louis this season.
He is tied for the team lead in points with Buchnevich with 29 and is the team leader in goals with 12. Of course, most of his production came early in the season, but at the moment, he is almost a point per game player, and no one should complain about that.
Remember when the Blues left Vince Dunn unprotected in the expansion draft this summer? It turns out that was one of the best decisions made by Armstrong this offseason.
Dunn’s unprotection allowed for Ivan Barbashev to remain on the team, and it has paid off big time for St. Louis.
For years, Barbashev has been one of the best players on the Blues roster, and he has done it quietly. He played a huge role in the Blues’ Stanley Cup run, and it has carried over in the two years since.
This season he has the points to prove his worth. After playing with his countrymen for the past few weeks, he has soared to third on the team in points with 25, and he is tied with Buchnevich for second on the team in goals with 11.
The only thing that should break up this line of Russians is injuries or sickness because, at the moment, it is one of the best lines in the entire NHL.