“Alex is going to be a Blue, whether it’s now or when in the future… he will be a Blue,” Armstrong told local reporters. “I want to crystalize that for our fans and 29 other poachers out there. He’s going to be a Blue.”
Having finished out a three-year entry-level deal that carried a cap hit of less than $3.2 million, Pietrangelo is an RFA for the first time in his career.
Though less of a household name, Pietrangelo could be targeting a contract in the ballpark of the one landed by blue-liner Drew Doughty, another 23-year-old Team Canada hopeful who was given an eight-year, $56-million deal by the Los Angeles Kings after his entry-level deal expired.
“That’d be nice. Obviously, he’s a great player,” Pietrangelo said this summer.
The King City, Ont., native is keeping his cards close to his vest but has been reported to be seeking $7 million per year, while the Blues would like to settle on $6 million or less. It’s a significant gap for a cash-conscious club nearing the cap ceiling. The Blues have a total of $7.6 million to play with as camp opens.
“You try to keep it as internal as you can because you don’t know what direction it’s going, but I enjoy talking to (my teammates) about it,” Pietrangelo said at the time. “They’re all interested, which means they want me back and they all care.”