Tarasenko staying in Russia for 2010/2011 Season

August 15, 2010

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Alessandro Seren Rosso from RussianProspect.com has confirmed that Vladimir Tarasenko, the Blues first round pick in 2010, will continue to play for Sibir Novosibirsk for the 2010/2011 season.

This was expected in most quarters and, whilst any new contract signing is unclear, it does look possible that Tarasenko will join the Blues for the 2011/2012 season.

Just to whet your appetite for what this guy can bring to the Blues, check out Tarasenko’s NHL draft compilation video below:

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Mandi Schwartz update

August 13, 2010

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Mandi Schwartz, sister of the Blues 2010 first round pick, Jaden Schwartz, has had her stem cell transplant operation postponed. The operation was scheduled for 26 August but had to be postponed once it was discovered on 11 August that Mandi was no longer in remission.

Mandi will have to undergo more chemotherapy before another date for the transplant can be set.

The Yale Bulldogs Website has a comprehensive article about Mandi and the latest developments, together with contact details for donations or to join the bone marrow register.

Thoughts and prayers to Mandi and her family.


Weekly Roundup

August 11, 2010

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Hardly a quiet week in the NHL with the fallout from the Kovalchuk decision still rattling around the online sites. The Blues, however, did make a move or two.

  • Acquired forward Graham Mink from the Florida Panthers in exchange for defenseman TJ Fast.  Mink played in the AHL last season posting 37 points (20 goals and 17 assists) with 86 penalty minutes from 67 games played.   This is a move designed to strengthen Peoria.
  • Signed 34 year old forward Dave Scatchard to a two way contract.  Scatchard shared time last season between the AHL and the Nashville Predators in the NHL.  He managed three goals and two assists for the Predators last season.
  • Signed defenseman Dean Arsene to a two way contract.  Arsene shared time last season between the AHL and the Edmonton Oilers.  With the Oilers, Arsene played 13 games and registered 41 penalty minutes.

More details on the above moves can be found on the Blues Official Site.

Rumour: Dmitry Chesnokov of yahoo sports has tweeted the following: “In other reports out of Russia, Blues 2010 1st round pick (16 overall) Tarasenko is close to signing an extension with his KHL club.” There is no word on length of contract and this is yet to be officially announced. This could merely be a formality – Tarasenko is only 18 after all.

UPDATE: Jeremy Rutherford has just tweeted the following: “Nothing official but word is Tarasenko may be signing 1-yr contract with KHL team, replacing his current 2-yr deal.” Looks like we can not only breathe again but start to get a wee bit excited too…


Erik Johnson signs 2 year contract extension

August 2, 2010

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Finally, it’s done. Erik Johnson, the last of the Blues restricted free agents, has signed a 2 year, $5.2million contract extension. The cap hit will be $2.6m per season.

Just like David Perron, Erik Johnson will still be a restricted free agent at the end of his contract and this is basically a way for the Blues to say “show us what you’ve got”. It gives the Blues time to evaluate properly and ensure these players grow and subsequently earn a bigger contract. Doug Armstrong, Blues GM, told Jeremy Rutherford at the Post-Dispatch:

“Our younger players, when they’re coming out of entry level, they’ve all progressed, but they haven’t been defined. By taking contracts at shorter term, you allow them to grow and make a fair-market value moving forward.”

In the same article by Jeremy Rutherford, Erik Johnson had this to say:

“I just told my agent I wanted to get it done,” Johnson said. “We were mulling over some offers for a while, but thus is what we wanted to do. I’m really grateful that the Blues have invested this in me.

“I know myself, and all the young guys included, plan on really going out and showing that we’re going to step up and take control of the team.”

So, this is it. The RFA’s are signed – but is the team set? Who knows.