Does the Blues re-signing of Alex Pietrangelo mean there’s no room for Ryan Whitney with the Blues? Could the Rangers shop backup goalie Martin Biron?
STLTODAY.COM: Jeremy Rutherford reports the Blues re-signing Alex Pietrangelo doesn’t mean they’re disinterested in Ryan Whitney, who is attending training camp on a tryout basis. They see him as potential depth for their defense. GM Doug Armstrong believes his club’s style of play is different from that of Whitney former team (Edmonton Oilers), which could be to Whitney’s benefit. However, the Blues currently have seven defensemen under one-way contracts, and Whitney isn’t interested in a two-way deal.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ian Cole (on a one-way, $825K contract) is the only guy on the Blues defense I see Whitney challenging for a spot. He’ll have his work cut out for him to be a threat to Jordan Leopold or Roman Polak. If Whitney doesn’t make the Blues but has a strong camp, it could help him sign with another club.
NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks reports on the competition between Martin Biron and Johan Hedberg for the role of Henrik Lundqvist’s backup. Biron is entering the final season of his contract (worth $1.3 million) while Hedberg is there on a tryout basis. Brooks suggests if Hedberg out-duels Biron, the latter could be shopped rather than demoted.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Anyone else see this as a means for the Rangers to free up some cap space to re-sign Derek Stepan? Sure seems that way to me. If Hedberg outplays Biron during pre-season and find a willing taker for the latter on the trade market, they could sign Hedberg for close to the league minimum ($550K) and put the savings from a Biron trade toward Stepan.