March 24: Bozak has officially been moved to injured reserve, the team announced today. The move created roster space for the team to recall defenseman Calle Rosen from the AHL’s Springfield Thunderbirds, giving them an extra defenseman on the roster while Torey Krug is out with injury. Rosen has two assists in six games with the Blues already this season.
March 16: The St. Louis Blues will be without center Tyler Bozak for at least four weeks after he suffered a lower-body injury. The veteran forward will be re-evaluated in a month, suggesting he could miss even more time.
Bozak, 35, hasn’t been very effective this season in his limited role, recording just three goals and 11 points in 47 games. While he was never expected to drive a ton of offense at this point in his career, the Blues are being absolutely caved in with him on the ice, allowing 23 goals against to just nine for at even strength. Those struggles mean that an injury–as tough as it is to hear–could actually be a positive thing for the team at this point, as a change at the bottom of the lineup may be long overdue.
If Bozak is out through the end of the regular season–about six weeks from now–it would actually give the team a tiny bit more cap flexibility, with his $750K hit going on long-term injured reserve. He could then come back for the playoffs when the cap doesn’t matter to bring his experience, leadership, and versatility to the room.
Whether it changes St. Louis’ deadline strategy isn’t really clear, though adding a right-handed center could be in order. The team has Robert Thomas for that when he’s healthy, but the rest of their regular centers (or even those players who regularly take draws) are lefties.