Besides the fiery talent of Jake Neighbours, roughly two months into the 2023/24 NHL season, one other key player for the St. Louis Blues has been veteran centre Oskar Sundqvist. The player nicknamed "Sunny" is certainly bright already this season, with 11 points off 2 goals and 9 assists in his 6th year with St. Louis.
He's also very versatile, possibly the most versatile man on the Blues' roster this season. The 29-year-old native of Boden, Sweden, who is approaching 100 career points with the Blues, is St. Louis' version of a Swiss army knife - a player who can do basically anything, no matter where they are on the ice.
Sundqvist is on the same offensive line as other Blues like Brandon Saad and youngster Kasperi Kapanen. There was some question as to how he'd also do with new veteran player Kevin Hayes coming over from Philadelphia, but it's safe to say that Sundqvist has adapted well so far. There is a reason the NHL centre is often compared to an NFL quarterback - both are capable of playing anywhere and are both the de facto leaders of their teams.
Now, while Sundqvist may not wear the "C," unlike Brayden Schenn, who is linemates with Hayes, you could argue that a player of his nature could one day wear the "A" for the assistant captain position. Sundqvist is just that good.
Sundqvist isn't without his flaws, like any greatly skilled NHLer. He is a bit sloppy on faceoffs, but he's been working on that ever since the start of this season. Right now he stands at 41.4 percent, 5th on the team. Sundqvist also uses a particular stick that can be a disadvantage on the faceoff circle but has since improved and is putting in the work to get towards moving up the chart for the Blues in faceoff percentage. And guess who he's behind right now? His own linemate, Brandon Saad, who is at 42.9 percent so far this season.
Sundqvist becomes an unrestricted free agent again after the 2023/24 season, having signed a 1-year deal with St. Louis after returning to the Gateway City while playing for the likes of Pittsburgh, Detroit and Central Division rival Minnesota, who was his last team before coming back to the Blues. With continued improvement and being a solid anchor for the Blues' third line this season, Sundqvist is on his way to becoming the Blues' next biggest all-around star.