The 2017-18 season might be Dmitrij Jaskin’s final year with the St. Louis Blues. As he prepares to play in the last year of his current contract (which carries a $1 million cap hit), Jaskin’s status with the Blues – and perhaps the NHL as a whole – remains unsettled.
The 24-year-old Jaskin has already been with the Blues since the 2012-13 season. The years have flown by, but unfortunately for Jaskin and fans who hoped he’d become a big part of the organization, he has yet to earn regular playing time.
Jaskin has suited up in an average of 57 games per year over the past three seasons and has seen his role mostly confined to the bottom-six of the lineup. That’s not a bad thing necessarily (every team needs those types of players), but he may be pushed out of the roster as new players and younger prospects are added to the mix.
This article may seem like a knock on Jaskin, but in reality it’s more of an observation. Jaskin does a lot of things well, but he doesn’t do any one thing particularly well to make himself stand out from the competition. He can shield the puck fairly well, but that’s not enough to warrant a regular lineup spot. The Blues will have some tough decisions to make regarding their depth.
Jaskin showed some promising talent when he scored 13 goals in 54 games in 2014-15. Unfortunately, he hasn’t been able to find similar success in the following years. Granted, some of that may be related to his role and who he was skating with, but it doesn’t look too good when he tallied just one goal last season. To make matters worse, his shooting percentage hit a new low with a 1.2% on 55 shots. When he was able to get an opportunity or a look at goal, he wasn’t able to capitalize.
It’s doubtful Jaskin will ever turn into the player fans had hoped to see, but now he’ll have to put up an impressive 2017-18 campaign (with the limited opportunity he may be given) if he hopes to stick around with the Blues beyond the upcoming season.