Colton Parayko Secures A Major Pay Day

By Mitchell Goldenberg and Jordan Goldenberg

Colton Parayko has gone under the radar on a National Scale for far too long. Parayko has slowly become one of the best defensemen in all of Hockey over the last 6 seasons, and he should no longer be “Under The Radar” after signing an 8 Year, $52 Million Contract extension.

For those who don’t know just how good Colton Parayko has been, we are going to link a 7 minute highlight video below. When Parayko is healthy, the Blues have been significantly better. If the defensive cores can remain healthy, we expect that the Blues will be in a lot better position than they were last season.

Colton Parayko Highlights via Blues Buzz on YouTube

2020-21 Highlights: Brandon Saad

By Jordan Goldenberg

When looking back on the 2020-21 season for the St. Louis Blues, one of the toughest points of the year would be revisiting the series against the Colorado Avalanche. This bitter taste is now a little sweetened knowing that Brandon Saad is now going to be in front of opposing goalies, rather than the St. Louis Goaltenders.

Brandon Saad was a terror for the Colorado Avalanche last season in the series against the St. Louis Blues, but it is a lot easier of a pill to swallow knowing that Saad is going to be grinding out possessions for St. Louis, rather than against us.

I have rewatched many highlight videos of Brandon Saad, but this video was my favorite. If you have an extra minute to spare, watch this video attached below and picture Saad with the likes of Robert Thomas and Torey Krug creating second chance opportunities for Saad in the rebounding position.

Brandon Saad Highlights: 2020-21 Season via Colorado Avalanche

St. Louis Blues Positional Outlook: Forwards

By Mitchell Goldenberg

There are a lot of expectations for the St. Louis Blues entering the 2021-22 Season, but the positional group with the most pressure would be the Forwards. There has been a lot of discussion about this positional group for St. Louis throughout the offseason, which will make it a very interesting season to watch play out.

It would be very remiss of me if I didn’t start this outlook without talking about Vladimir Tarasenko. Vlady requested a trade towards the beginning of the offseason, and he is still on the team. At the time of the request it seemed like a certainty that Tarasenko would be on a new team, yet here we are approaching the preseason, and Vlady is still a member of the Blues. It has become less of a certainty after Tarasenko will be on another team this season, especially after bringing in fellow Russian, Pavel Buchnevich from the Rangers, which pleased seemed to please Vlady.

Buchnevich was one of the two biggest acquisitions for St. Louis this offseason, as the Blues also brought in one of the biggest thorns in their side from last season, Brandon Saad. Saad and Buchnevich look to add some juice to the St. Louis Blues after a quiet exit from the playoffs last season.

With these two being acquired, it makes for St. Louis to appear as deep as they have been in a long time on paper. Adding names like Buchnevich and Saad to the mix will allow Head Coach Craig Berube to get creative with how he will want to use this roster. In my past breakdowns of the Goalies and the Defensemen, it has laid itself out for who will be in the lineups, and which pairings will likely work themselves out. This couldn’t be further from the truth, as Chief has shown a tendency to mix the lines up if they are not working.

With that being said, it is safe to project Ryan O’Reilly, David Perron, and Vladimir Tarasenko to start off on the same line, as that has been out go-to best line for a few years. The interesting piece to the puzzle will be how St. Louis will utilize Brayden Schenn. Schenn has been the unsung hero for St. Louis throughout his tenure, but with his versatility to play Center, as well as Wing, I am excited to see who he will end up meshing with.

All in all, it is important to remember that this team had an underwhelming ending to last year’s season. St. Louis needed to bring in some fresh faces in order to rejuvenate the club, and try to remind everyone that the Blues won a Stanley Cup in the most recent season where fans were at full capacity for the entirety of the season.

St. Louis Blues Positional Outlook: Defensemen

By Mitchell Goldenberg

Last year was the first year since the 2007-08 Season where Alex Pietrangelo was not a member of the St. Louis Blues. This marked a new era for St. Louis, and it was not as bad as most thought it would.

The St. Louis Blues utilized roster their roster moves from previous seasons to fill the skates of Pietrangelo. Justin Faulk had a bad year in 2019-2020, but managed to step up last season, and make the hole that Pietrangelo left seem a lot less empty. Faulk managed to play all 56 games last season, making him the only defender for St. Louis to do so.

The biggest acquisition that St. Louis made last season was bringing in Torey Krug. Krug had a +/- of 11 last season, which tied for second with Justin Faulk. It was about what we expected from Krug, but he was set up to fail as the direct replacement of the longtime captain of the Blues. Krug managed to facilitate well down the stretch, but entering his second season on the team, it is safe to say that we all expect Krug to score more than two goals this season.

The St. Louis Blues saw a sneaky good season from Marco Scandella last season. Marco managed to record a +/- of 14 last year for St. Louis, which would lead all defensemen. Marco is not a top defensemen for St. Louis, but it is important to have the lower pairings to be able to defend well and manage to not give up goals, before worrying about scoring them.

Of all of the defensemen on the St. Louis Blues, Colton Parayko has the potential to be the very best, if he is not there already. Last season was filled with injuries for Parayko. Colton only played in 32 games, but he was tied for second with Scandella in blocks with 64. Parayko and Scandella only trailed Justin Faulk in blocks, but Parayko blows the team out of the water with 2 Blocks Per Game.

The St. Louis Blues have a lot of talent but with the departure of Dunn to the Kraken, it is important for young defensemen like Wallman and Mikkola to step up from depth pieces to reliable third pairings. It will be an interesting season this upcoming year, but with full capacity for a full season for the first time since winning the Stanley Cup, who knows the kind of mojo that St. Louis will generate behind their team.

St. Louis Blues Positional Outlook: Goaltender

By Mitchell Goldenberg

In the greatest season in St. Louis Blues History, there was an individual who took center stage as the face of the Blues. This man provided cocky quotes off of the ice, and backed them up on it. This man is none other than Jordan Binnington.

If you are reading this St. Louis Blues Blog, you know the story of how Jordan Binnington became the starting goalie for St. Louis in 2019, so I will not bore you with the details. The important thing to note from this story, is that Binner sparked the team into the first Stanley Cup in Franchise History. The Rookie Goaltender got paid based off of his Rookie Campaign, and fans everywhere were thrilled about the signing. We are now two seasons and a pandemic removed from this signing, so where does it sit without the Brett Hull sized buzz around the young goalie?

Jordan Binnington understandably came back to earth a bit over the past two seasons. Outside of the Brodeurs and the Roys of the world, not many can remain at the level that Binner was at between the pipes in 2019. Jordan has shown flashes of his 2019 form, but he has also bottomed out at times. St. Louis will forever love Jordan Binnington, but this is a crucial year for the legacy that Binner is going to leave in St. Louis. with the first two of his six year deal behind us, St. Louis is entering the prime years of Jordan Binnington’s career. If we want to return to being contenders, not pretenders like we were in the 2020 season, Binnington needs to take a step up.

An interesting move that Head Coach Craig Berube made last season was the playing time that was given to Ville Husso. In 2019, Jordan Binnington was called up to the middling team to protect St. Louis’ top goalie prospect, Ville Husso. Only two seasons ago, the Blues projected Husso to be better than Binnington, yet we are entering the 2021-22 season with Husso as a valuable 2nd Goalie on the roster. Last season, Berube utilized the goalie who was hot at the time as the go-to starter, and this is what pulled the Blues into the playoffs. Husso had stretches where he looked close to elite, but also had plenty of stretches where he looked outmatched.

In recent years, St. Louis have found the most success with a two goalie system. I am thinking back to Jaroslav Hak├ík and Brian Elliott, Brian Elliott and Jake Allen, to Jake Allen and Jordan Binnington. Even with Binnington being the go-to this season, it is important to the team’s success for Ville to take a major step forward and become a dominant number two. He has the potential to do this, and if we can have successful goaltending, I know that we can have an improved 2021-22 Season.

St. Louis Blues Extend Jordan Kyrou for Two Years

By Mitchell Goldenberg

The St. Louis Blues have had an active offseason, and continue the process by resigning Restricted Free Agent, Jordan Kyrou. Kyrou has signed a two year contract with St. Louis worth $5.6 Million ($2.8 million AAV).

Photo Created By Mitchell Goldenberg

Jordan Kyrou has shown flashes of excellence in the NHL. He has really developed into a nice forward, but he did have stretches where he failed to show up. If Kyrou is going to be worth the $2.8 million AAV, then St. Louis is going to expect more stretches like his first half in the shortened 2020-21 season.

The St. Louis Blues have made a lot of moves this offseason, but these moves have shown that they are also expecting some younger players to step up and play to their potential. I have previously mentioned on the other site that one of these key players would be Jordan Kyrou, and this is proven to be St. Louis’ expectation as well with this contract.

All in all, this deal is an exciting move for Blues fans who believe in Kyrou, and a nerve wracking one for those who think he was a flash in the pan. Committing this money to Kyrou is expected, but I would like to see a full season before a multiyear deal. With that being said, I love the move and hope that St. Louis is not done this offseason.