While the Blues have held contract talks with pending UFA goaltender Carter Hutton, GM Doug Armstrong told Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that the two sides are not close to an agreement and that the netminder is intent on seeing what options are available to him on the open market. Hutton was the league leader in save percentage (.931) and goals against average (2.09) among qualifying goaltenders and has positioned himself to have a lot of suitors in free agency. Armstrong acknowledged that neither side has ruled out Hutton returning once he gets a sense of what other teams are offering.
More from the Central:
- Also from Gordon’s piece, the Blues have also been in contract talks with pending UFA center Kyle Brodziak. The 34-year-old is coming off of his best season points-wise since 2010-11 after he posted 10 goals and 23 assists in 81 games while also winning a career-best 52.1% of his faceoffs. That type of production may garner some interest in him as a third-liner which would have him well-positioned for a nice raise on the $900K salary ($950K cap hit) he had this past season.
- The Blackhawks would like to move the 27th overall selection in next week’s draft for a player that can come in and help the team now, reports Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Times. The pick was originally acquired back at the trade deadline from Nashville in exchange for winger Ryan Hartman. Although Chicago missed the playoffs, they are still in win-now mode with several big contracts on the books so going for a rebuild doesn’t seem likely at this point. If they do keep the pick, Lazerus notes that the team likes Drummondville defenseman Nicolas Beaudin who is currently pegged as a late first or early second-round selection.