Sep 17, 2013; Columbus, OH, USA; Buffalo Sabres center Mikhail Grigorenko (25) skates with the puck as Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Frederic St. Denis (28) defends during the first period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports

Jackets Recall St. Denis From Springfield

Missing Fedor Tyutin, Ryan Murray and Nikita Nikitin leaves a large hole on the Blue Jackets’ blue line. They added some defensive depth at the NHL Trade Deadline on Wednesday, but it wasn’t enough when Nikitin was lost to injury on Thursday in Chicago. To help fill that gap, the Jackets recalled defenseman Frederic St. Denis from Springfield. Here is a look at his stats compared to some other Jackets defensemen this season:

GP

Goals

Assists

Points

+/-

PIM

Frederic St. Denis

51

9

15

24

14

28

Nikita Nikitin

56

2

13

15

7

18

Fedor Tyutin

53

4

20

24

6

30

James Wisniewski

56

5

32

37

-3

49

Jack Johnson

63

4

21

25

-4

40

Ryan Murray

61

3

17

20

3

10

 

Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

Granted, these stats are AHL totals, but they are still pretty impressive. St. Denis has a better +/- rating than any player on the Jackets Roster, and more points than all Jackets defensemen other than Wisniewski and Johnson and is tied with Tyutin.

The Jackets are always looking for offense, and never more than after losing 6-1 on Thursday. Given this, it makes sense to call up St. Denis. On the stat sheet at least, he is an offensive defenseman. Contributing 9 goals and 15 assists in 51 games, he is right on track with the top Jackets defensemen. His +/- is an impressive +14. The best +/- on the Jackets belongs to forward Corey Tropp with 11. By calling up St. Denis, team management is signalling its need for an offensive defenseman in the absence of their top three d-men.

It remains to be seen if St. Denis will be able to contribute these kind of numbers in an NHL setting, but hopefully he will be able to help the Jackets pull off a win in Nashville tonight.

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