(HockeySTL)-- Five days into training camp, the Blues have made their first cuts of the preseason, trimming six players from their camp roster.
The club announced on Tuesday that the six cuts include forwards Samuel Blais, Jaedon Descheneau and C.J. Yakimowicz along with defensemen Thomas Vannelli , Santeri Saari and Dmitrii Sergeev.
With some junior hockey league teams beginning their seasons this month and others having already begun, Blais, Descheneau, Yakimowicz, Vannelli and Sergeev have been returned to their junior clubs.
Vannelli, who played in the Blues’ first preseason game against Columbus, tallied two points, both assists, and led all prospects in points before being cut.
Additionally, Saari has been assigned to Jokerit in Finland, where he has spent the last two seasons.
The roster trim will allow the cut players to continue their development while also allowing the Blues’ coaching staff to better evaluate the remaining players who have a shot at making the club’s NHL roster.
After the cuts, the Blues have 53 players remaining on their camp roster. Before the regular-season begins, the Blues will have to trim their roster down to 23 players, so, the next few rounds of cuts, some likely taking place later this week, will be more substantial.
The remaining 53 players will hit the ice Wednesday at Scottrade Center for a practice and a full-team scrimmage, which head coach Ken Hitchcock says he hopes will create space amongst the remaining players.
The club’s next preseason game is on Thursday night in St. Louis. Hitchcock has already declared that a chunk of NHL players, including: T.J. Oshie, Alexander Steen, David Backes, Paul Stastny, Alex Pietrangelo and Jay Bouwmeester will be in the lineup. Brian Elliott will get the start in goal.