Thursday, July 17, 2014

Another St. Louis native added to Blues

Team signs defenseman Chris Butler to 
one-year, two-way contract, also add Ferriero

ST. LOUIS -- The Blues are making it a family affair when it comes to those that attended Chaminade High School in suburban St. Louis and the University of Denver.

First, it was Paul Stastny. Now, add Chris Butler to the list.

The Blues added Stastny, who attended Chaminade his freshman and sophomore years before going to the University of Denver, on the first day of free agency with a four-year, $28-million contract. On Wednesday, they signed Butler to a one-year, two-way contract ($650,000 NHL, $400,000 AHL).
(Getty Images)
Kirkwood native Chris Butler hopes to get a chance to
play for his childhood team after signing a one-year,
two-way contract with the Blues on Wednesday.

Butler, 27, is a Chaminade alumni who also graduated from college at Denver. He's a Kirkwood native who spent the past three seasons with the Calgary Flames, including playing in all 82 games a season ago, scoring two goals and adding 14 assists.

The 6-foot-1, 194-pound Butler was drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in the fourth round of the 2005 NHL Draft.

Butler has 75 points (10 goals, 65 assists) in 349 career games and became an unrestricted free agent July 1. He provides the Blues organization with experience and depth on defense and gives the franchise another puck-moving blue liner.

Butler will come to camp looking to be a surprise addition to the parent club, which already has Alex Pietrangelo, Jay Bouwmeester, Kevin Shattenkirk, newly-acquired Carl Gunnarsson, Barret Jackman, Jordan Leopold and Ian Cole as its top seven.

"My personal goal is to come to training camp and compete for a spot," Butler said. "I have no intention of playing in the American (Hockey) League, even though it's a two-way deal. I feel like I'm still an NHL player ... it's just kind of a camp to take a step back and redefine myself as a player, come to a winning organization and a team and a franchise that I think is pretty close to achieving their ultimate goal."

The Blues also added to their growing list of players to stock with the Chicago Wolves of the AHL when they also announced the signing of forward Benn Ferriero to a one-year, two way contract. Ferriero, 27, spent the majority of last season with the American Hockey League’s (AHL) Utica Comets, ranking third on the club with 39 points and second with 19 goals in 54 regular season appearances.  In addition, he dressed in two games with the Vancouver Canucks in 2013-14.

Overall, the 5-11, 187-pound forward has appeared in five NHL seasons, including stints with San Jose (2009-12), the New York Rangers (2012-13) and Canucks.

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