Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Blue Notes: New Steen Line Is Clicking

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Blue Notes: New Steen Line Is Clicking

Article excerpt

GLENDALE, ARIZ. * The Blues are entering their second week without their top center, Paul Stastny, and, on Monday at least, they seemed to be handling it as well as they handled the trade of Kevin Shattenkirk.

With Stastny out for at least another week he's not on the Blues' trip to Arizona and Colorado the Blues have moved Alexander Steen to center between Jaden Schwartz and Vladimir Tarasenko. On Monday against the Coyotes, Steen had four assists, Schwartz had two goals and Tarasenko had one, though he would have much rather Schwartz have it to complete a hat trick.

"Both of those guys have great vision," Schwartz said, "and can make great plays and can put the puck in the net, so I think, where we're at our best, we're moving our feet, working hard and when you're flat-footed and trying to be too cute, that's when things start going the wrong way. We put our work first and get to the net and focus on going north first and making plays after that."

The game Monday was the third full game for the unit since Stastny was hurt. Though the group didn't team up for a goal in the first two games, they were creating chances. Tarasenko had 14 shots on goal in the three games and 22 shot attempts, while Schwartz had nine shots on goal and 12 shot attempts. Monday's outburst came mostly in the second and third period after a very ho-hum start to the game.

"It's really important to stay in it," Tarasenko said, "even if you're frustrated a little bit. Our first two power plays weren't that great and then when the game doesn't go your way, it's payback in the end if you keep working and help your teammates. That's what we tried to do, just help each other, leave each other in a good spot and help the team win.

"It's nice Schwartzy is starting to score again. They're both great players. I keep saying this: It's a pleasure to play with them and we need to improve more and win the games that we have left to prepare for the playoffs. …

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