Blues’ Jaskin on a roll heading into matchup with Sabres
ST. LOUIS — The St. Louis Blues will be without one of their top forwards for Sunday evening’s home game against the Buffalo Sabres.
Jaden Schwartz sustained an injury to his right ankle when he blocked a shot in the Blues’ 6-1 win over the Red Wings on Saturday in Detroit. He had to be helped off the ice after suffering the injury, which occurred late in the first period, and was not able to put any pressure on his right leg.
Schwartz did not return for the final two periods and was placed on injured reserve Sunday. He will be re-evaluated in six weeks. Ivan Barbashev was called up from the Chicago Wolves of the AHL to take his roster spot.
Before having to leave the game, Schwartz scored his 14th goal of the season to briefly tie Brayden Schenn for the team lead. Schenn scored his 15th of the season in the game’s final minute.
With Schwartz out, one player who could move up to his spot on the team’s top line is Dmitrij Jaskin, who scored his fourth goal of the season Saturday. Jaskin has six points (three goals, three assists) in his last nine games while playing on either the third or fourth line.
“It’s the best hockey he has played,” Blues coach Mike Yeo said of Jaskin. “His confidence is high, he’s playing with more pace to his game. He’s getting involved every night.”
The Blues are expected to start Jake Allen in goal for the second game in as many days. He stopped 28 of 29 shots Saturday and has allowed just one goal in his last two contests against a combined 58 shots as the Blues extended their current winning streak to three games.
The Sabres also have a goalie who’s hot at the moment, but Robin Lehner will be coming off a frustrating 3-2 overtime loss Friday night in Chicago. He surrendered the winning goal with just 4.9 seconds remaining in overtime.
That came after Jack Eichel was stopped on a penalty shot earlier in the overtime.
“I get a chance to win the game in overtime, I don’t do it,” Eichel said. “Yeah, I need to score that goal. Yeah, this (stinks).”
Lehner has faced 88 shots in his last two games, stopping 83 of them. He encountered 51 shots against the Blackhawks.
“I’ve been feeling good lately,” Lehner told The Buffalo News. “It’s tough when we’re not getting wins. I work hard in practice to try to improve my game and I think everyone is. That’s what matters.”
The loss to the Blackhawks left the Sabres with a 7-17-5 record, last in the Eastern Conference. They have won only two of 14 games since Nov. 7.