Robby Fabbri’s return continues to excite St. Louis as we inch closer to opening night. The young forward suffered a season-ending injury after an impressive rookie season, but he's ready to slide back into the Blues’ lineup.
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In his first season as a Blue, Robby averaged .514 points per game. He followed that up with a sophomore average of .569 points per game before tearing his ACL in February against the Pittsburgh Penguins. This increase of scoring was promising, but there were a couple concerning statistics, too.
Here’s a video of Fabbri’s injury:
His plus/minus dropped from -2 to -16. In his rookie season, Fabbri played 72 games and had 25 penalty minutes. In his second season, he had 27 penalty minutes despite playing 21 less games than his rookie season. The increase in penalties was problematic since the Blues continued to have penalty issues even after Robby's injury. However, these uglier stats are common for second-year players, and they're often referred to as the "sophomore slump".
Fabbri is entering his third year in the NHL and last year of his entry-level deal. At the conclusion of the 2017-2018 season, he'll hit restricted free agency. This upcoming season is his chance to prove himself worthy of a contract similar to the one Colton Parayko signed on Thursday (5 years, $5.5M AAV).
We expect Fabbri to be linemates with Alexander Steen and Brayden Schenn, giving the second line the scoring consistency they lacked toward the end of last season.
Peter Hempstead and PJ Cox