The St. Louis Blues’ 2021-22 season represented a major transition for the franchise. No longer a stout defensive team built from the blue line out, they finished second in the NHL in goals scored, with nine forwards recording 20-plus goals. Though the season came to an end in a six-game defeat by the Colorado Avalanche in the second round, there are plenty of highs and lows to reflect on. In this series, we’ll evaluate each player who played 10 or more games with the team (as well as the head coach and general manager), grading their individual performance and looking at their future with the team.
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Before the start of the season, the St. Louis Blues acquired forward Logan Brown from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for Zach Sanford. The team was ready to move on from Sanford after consistent turnovers and inconsistency in all areas of the game. The team acquired Brown with anticipation of a forward that can play at the center position with great vision, size (6-foot-6), and speed.
What Went Right: Brown Earned Spot in the NHL
Like several of his forward counterparts, Brown was able to secure a role splitting time in the starting lineup. Before playing with the Blues, he played only 30 games with the Senators over the span of four seasons. In his first season in St. Louis, he was able to play 39 games where he scored four goals and 11 points, his first goal coming in his debut game. To get the most out of a player like Brown, he will need to continue to develop his all-around game and earn a spot on the three scoring lines, using his size to his advantage. He showed this is possible with flashes of offensive talent and his hard-nosed tendencies along the boards.
What Went Wrong: Brown’s Deployment
While Brown was able to find and secure time in the lineup this season, his 39 games averaged only 10:11 of time on ice and a bottom-six deployment. His performance started on a high note for the club as he scored three goals in his first nine games. The offensive output quickly dried up over his next 30 games. He was oftentimes passed over by players like Tyler Bozak, Dakota Joshua, Nathan Walker, and Alexei Toropchenko as his inability to produce offensively and remain a reliable option defensively cost him playing time throughout the season.
By the end of the season, Brown played more games than anticipated and found solid footing in his bottom-six role. As a former 11th-overall draft choice of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, his first-line center potential and forecast that he was projected to have in the NHL has yet to come to fruition.
- Brown surpassed his Senators’ scoring output (nine points over four seasons) in one season with the Blues
- Managed 34 shots on goal with an 11.8 percent shooting percentage
- He had a 66-102 (39.3 percent) faceoff rating
Final Grade: C
While he took a step in the right direction this season, Brown’s opportunities were not taken advantage of and given to others when he failed to execute. There is talent there that may take longer to reach. His performance this season was average but serviceable.
What’s Next for Brown?
Brown signed a one-year contract extension worth $750,000 on Feb. 8, 2022. He will need to do more and continue his development and two-way abilities if he intends to play more than 40 games during the 2022-23 season. He has proven to the Blues that he can play as a scoring forward, but will likely find additional success and playing time in a bottom-six checking role with a similar playing style and upside as former Blues forward Sammy Blais. With a plethora of options coming down the pipeline, his future in St. Louis could be shorter than expected.