The St. Louis Blues are usually pretty good at keeping things behind closed doors. However, there have been a few veiled shots taken by both team and player in the quest to keep the captain.
The St. Louis Blues want to keep Alex Pietrangelo. Their captain wants to stay.
With all that in mind, it should be in everyone’s best interest to just get in a room and iron out all the details. Sure, the Blues have cap issues to work out to afford Pietrangelo, but this is not necessarily a chicken and the egg scenario. One thing does not have to exist before the other.
But, while the Blues are pretty good at keeping their secrets behind closed doors most times, there are a few cracks in the facade lately. Oddly, the cracks have come from the captain and the general manager.
When Doug Armstrong had his post-season press conference, he actually addressed the question of signing Pietrangelo somewhat bluntly. He said it essentially boiled down to a match equation, figuring out what Petro wants vs. what the team can reasonably afford.
Armstrong also said that he had not received an indication whether Pietrangelo wanted to stay. Perhaps he misspoke, but the wording he had used indicated he had not officially heard from Pietrangelo about wanting to stay.
Now, Pietrangelo is starting to take veiled shots too. While speaking with Pierre LeBrun, the Blues captain indicated his disappointment.
“It’s been a little disappointing that (the St. Louis Blues and I) haven’t been able to get a deal done, obviously,” Pietrangelo said, according to LeBrun. “But this is the situation that we’re in, we’re over three weeks away from Oct. 9. There hasn’t been much in terms of progress.”
The reality of both sets of statements is there is nothing actually wrong with either. Neither the general manager nor the player took shots at the other.
This was not a case of the Blues saying they needed Pietrangelo to take a home town discount or he was being greedy. It was not a case of the player saying Armstrong was not negotiating in good faith or the team was being stingy.
Still, it has an odd feel to it. While these are just statements, they both felt like they could have been left out.
Both times, it felt like there was another way to answer the question without showing any cards at all. Armstrong and Pietrangelo have not shown many cards, but this felt like we got a peak at their initial hand ala the hidden camera on televised poker.
That might work for some franchises, but the Blues are not one of them. Like any sport, Blues fans have a tendency to take sides. Giving them an extra reason to take this side or that is not something we need right now.
Ultimately, I have switched to the opinion that this gets done somehow. The trade of Jake Allen is not as much an indicator as most initially believed, but I think it was enough movement to think the Blues are not about to disrupt their team defensively just yet and they will keep their top defender around.
Time will tell. For now, all sides should play things very close to the vest.