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Mar 9, 2014; Saint Paul, MN, USA; St. Louis Blues defenseman Jay Bouwmeester (19) checks Minnesota Wild forward Kyle Brodziak (21) in the third period at Xcel Energy Center. The St. Louis Blues defeated the Minnesota Wild in a 3-2 shoot out. Mandatory Credit: Marilyn Indahl-USA TODAY Sports

Jay Bouwmeester: St. Louis Blues Player Spotlight

[Mar 8, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports]

Since joining the St. Louis Blues just before last year’s trade deadline, Jay Bouwmeester has settled comfortably into the top defensive pairing with Alex Pietrangelo. Bouwmeester’s smooth-skating style and long reach make it difficult for opposing forwards to work around him. Blues fans witness history in the making every night he steps onto the ice.

Jay’s on pace to finish the season with 40+ points for the fourth time in his career but more importantly, he helps anchor one of the NHL’s best defenses. With his help the Blues rank 3rd in the NHL in goals-allowed per game and second in fewest shots-allowed per game. St. Louis also boasts the league’s third best penalty killing unit, of which Bouwmeester is a major piece. He’s averaged 24:18 of ice per game this season, just below his career average of 25:11.

Those minutes add up over the course of a season but at age 30 with a new 5-year deal in his pocket, Bouwmeester hardly seems to notice, not skipping a beat (or a shift) leading him to being one of professional sports’ most durable, most reliable athletes.

Bouwmeester and Petro played together and won a Gold Medal for Team Canada in the Sochi Winter Games last month, and there’s been a slight adjustment period as they’ve returned to NHL play, as has been true of many NHL’ers who skated for their countries. True to form, Jay quietly, solidly goes about playing his game, which fits in perfectly with Coach Hitchcock’s defensive style.

St. Louis is lucky to have Bouwmeester locked up for the next four years and after playing in his first post-season game last season with the Blues he’s primed to create his playoff legacy. I believe we’ll soon see him hoisting the Stanley Cup with the Bluenote on his chest.


Tags: Jay Bouwmeester St. Louis Blues

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