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Hitchcock: Paajarvi ‘didn’t deserve’ to be scratched Saturday

Jan 27, 2014, 9:16 PM EDT

St. Louis Blues' Magnus Paajarvi, of Sweden, prepares for a face off during the third period of a preseason NHL hockey game against the Tampa Bay Lightning Friday, Sept. 20, 2013, in St. Louis. The Lightning won 4-3. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) AP

Alexander Steen wasn’t expected to play on Saturday after suffering a fractured toe. When he ended up in the lineup anyways, the Blues had to adjust and Magnus Paajarvi ended up being the odd man out.

That doesn’t mean St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock has had a change of heart on Paajarvi. In fact, he was quick to praise the 22-year-old forward on Monday.

“He didn’t deserve to come out the last game,” Hitchcock told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “But somebody had to and it was my decision to make the change. But he’s going right back in tomorrow. He deserves to play and he’s played really well.”

Who will go out remains to be seen. Steen skipped Monday’s practice to rest his toe, but he’s still expected to play tomorrow. With him unavailable for the morning skate, Ryan Reaves moved from the fourth to top unit while Chris Stewart skated on the fourth line.

Stewart only logged 5:32 minutes of ice time on Saturday, so you might think that when Reaves goes back to the fourth line to accommodate Steen, Stewart will be taken out of the lineup entirely. However, Hitchcock insisted that Stewart will also play.

  1. lowenni - Jan 27, 2014 at 10:50 PM

    Stewart just can never seem to get it together. Sometimes he can dominate games with his size and goal-scoring ability, but he seems to dissapear more often than not.

  2. bucfanforlife - Jan 27, 2014 at 11:01 PM

    stewie and some picks for miller

    • jhaegs - Jan 28, 2014 at 3:03 AM

      And Halak… (They can have Colaiacavo too)

      • paperlions - Jan 28, 2014 at 7:44 AM

        Are the cap hits of Stewart and Halak enough to make room for Miller? As I understand it, either Buffalo has to eat some $$ (meaning the Blues probably have to give up more) or the players they give up have to come close to Miller’s $6.25M (or so) cap hit.

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