The St. Louis Blues started the season with a strong performance from their top forwards – David Backes, Vladimir Tarasenko, T.J. Oshie and Chris Stewart – but have been fortunate in the past few games to get additional scoring from some unexpected sources. David Perron has come on strong as of late, and Wade Redden has scored in each of their last two games. The Blues took a chance and grabbed Redden off of waivers, after the New York Rangers were able to use an amnesty buyout on his contract. So far, he has been a great addition to the team, with his two goals in three games being a surprise, but certainly a welcome one.
For years, Redden was a reliable defenseman who could contribute offensively for the Ottawa Senators. He scored at least 10 goals in five seasons, and was good for 40 points or more in four different seasons. After signing with the Rangers, his offensive production declined rapidly, which saw the team bury him in the AHL for two seasons. He appears to be quite happy to be back in the NHL, and was visibly excited to tally his first goal since 2010, a slap shot from the point against the Dallas Stars on Saturday.
The Blues have been used to getting offensive help from their defensemen, and early returns make it look like Alex Pietrangelo and Kevin Shattenkirk will once again rank among the team leaders in scoring. If Redden can add 5-10 goals for the team, he becomes quite a bargain at a price tag of just $800,000 for 48 games.