Contract talks picking up between Blues, captain Pietrangelo

The Hockey Night in Canada panel talk about all the news and rumors around the league including the status of Dustin Byfuglien.

Fresh off leading his club to its first ever Stanley Cup, Alex Pietrangelo is in need of a new deal as he plays out the final season of his current contract.

With the St. Louis Blues heading to Toronto for an upcoming game against the Maple Leafs, Pietrangelo’s camp should have an opportunity to move forward with talks on a new deal, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.

“[Pietrangelo’s] agents, Newport, are based in Toronto — it is expected they will meet with the GM, Doug Armstrong and we’ll see if this gets to a critical stage,” Friedman said Saturday during Hockey Night in Canada’s ‘Headlines’ segment.

Friedman added the club is hoping their captain’s new deal lands below the $9-million plateau.

“It is believed the Blues want him around Oliver Ekman-Larsson’s number, which is eight [years] times $8.25 million,” Friedman said. “But, if Pietrangelo was to go to unrestricted free agency, he’d do very well.”

The 29-year-old’s current deal carries a $6.5-million cap hit. The three defenders slotting in with higher cap hits than the aforementioned Ekman-Larsson next season are Erik Karlsson ($11.5 million), Drew Doughty ($11 million), and P.K. Subban ($9 million).

Pietrangelo led the Blues in ice time last season, skating 24:05 minutes per night. He’s averaged above the 24-minute mark in each of the past eight seasons and posted 40-plus points six times in that span.

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