Brayden Schenn trade keeps looking worse for Flyers

Jim McIsaac / Getty Images Sport / Getty

It looked lopsided at the time, but the Brayden Schenn deal isn't getting any better for the Philadelphia Flyers.

Schenn scored twice and notched three points as his St. Louis Blues cruised to a 4-1 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday night, and he's been consistently productive since joining his new club.

He has found a home on the Blues' top line with Vladimir Tarasenko and Jaden Schwartz, and while that assignment would be beneficial to any player, he's proving he belongs there.

The seventh-year center has 25 points in 20 games with the Blues, including 14 points in his last six games. Only Nikita Kucherov has a better points-per-game rate (2.4) than Schenn (2.3) in the NHL since Nov. 4.

Flyers general manager Ron Hextall has to be cringing with each subsequent multi-point game by his former forward, especially considering what the GM came away with in the trade he and Blues general manager Doug Armstrong consummated over the summer.

Hextall received Jori Lehtera, plus a late first-round pick that he used to select Sault St. Marie center Morgan Frost, and another conditional first-round pick (that could become a first and third rounder) in the draft-night deal.

Lehtera was a healthy scratch Thursday night for the Flyers' shootout loss to the Winnipeg Jets, and he's been virtually invisible offensively, contributing a single point in 12 games. The 29-year-old doesn't have a track record of significant offensive production, but it has to be concerning to Hextall that the lone NHL-caliber piece he acquired in the deal is having trouble cracking the lineup.

Frost looks like a promising prospect, with 11 goals and 28 points in 21 games so far in his third season with the OHL's Greyhounds, but he's 18 years old and won't be wearing Flyers orange any time soon.

It's early, but Philadelphia is once again on the outside looking in in the Eastern Conference playoff picture about a quarter of the way through the season. The Flyers have lost three straight games and were shut out by the Minnesota Wild in consecutive contests before falling to the Jets on Thursday night.

The Flyers' top line of Claude Giroux, Sean Couturier and Jakub Voracek has been effective, but the club is missing the offensive depth that Schenn once gave them. Philadelphia ranks in the bottom third of the league in goals per game as a team, and their power-play efficiency has also dipped slightly from 19.5 percent in 2016-17 (14th) to 18.2 percent so far this season (18th).

Meanwhile, the Blues boast the best record in the Western Conference and the second best in the NHL behind the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Frost could very well develop into an indispensable NHL talent, but until that happens - if it even does - the Flyers will keep looking like the big losers in the trade.

Brayden Schenn trade keeps looking worse for Flyers
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