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06-20-2012, 07:36 PM
  #52
PocketNines
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffro View Post
And we're talking about a third of that on four defensemen. I don't know that that's necessarily bad, but it would be surprising for this organization.

Of course, I suppose there's no guarantee Shattenkirk is here much past his ELC, but that would be a shame.
Blues fans shouldn't be surprised that the offense is more or less set (Langenbrunner & Nichol will probably return but short of a hockey trade that's about it) but the defense is ripe for a major upgrade and that player is going to be well-paid if they're truly getting a top-pair caliber defenseman. Last summer management set expectations that the Blues would do little and they did little, signing a few vets for better depth. This summer the clear expectation-setting is that they're looking to be "active" and aggressive. Armstrong talked about "premier players" and the entire focus is on a top-pair partner for Pietrangelo. They will certainly bid for Suter and if Garrison reaches UFA him too. They might be priced out of the Suter sweepstakes but they can absolutely win the Garrison bidding if the high bid is 5x5. Arnott (2.875), Colaiacovo (2.5) and Huskins (1.0) will all not return, plus the 750K they save on Stewart/Jackman over last season, that's a little over 7M they're saving. Half of that will go to increases in Perron/Oshie contracts but they can pay Garrison and not have a payroll much different than last year. Also there will be more true sellouts at higher ticket prices and Garrison is a huge upgrade of talent over Colaiacovo.

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