Monday, September 26, 2016

Ferraro looks to make his mark on roster

Son of former Blue Ray Ferraro wants to add to mix on NHL lineup; 
Parayko, Jaskin back on ice after World Cup stints; tonight's lineup in Dallas

ST. LOUIS -- Veterans T.J. Galiardi and Eric Nystrom will get a second crack in as many days to make an impression on Blues brass. 

That is a given since the forwards are in camp on professional tryouts. 

But it's also a chance for Landon Ferraro, who played Sunday night in the Blues' 5-0 win at Columbus, who has the security of a one-year, two-way contract signed during the off-season, to show off and impress the Blues' management team.

Ferraro, a 2009 second-round pick of the Detroit Red Wings, has a $700,000 NHL contract and $275,000 at the AHL level, feels like he's in the same boat as the guys on PTO's. So when the Blues (2-0) face the Dallas Stars at 7:30 p.m. today at American Airlines Center, Ferraro, who had an assist in the win Sunday, gets the chance to shine.

"I have my contract and there are PTO's, but at the same time, if they play well and they outplay the rest of us, then they're going to get their jobs. We're all in the same position here trying to put your best foot forward and make the roster. You kind of just have to worry about yourself and make sure that you're doing everything to give yourself a chance."

Ferraro, who split time with the Red Wings and Boston Bruins, who claimed him off waivers and had five goals and five assists in 55 regular season games, thought he played well enough with the Bruins to stick, but when it didn't work out, the chance to come to St. Louis, which has given two-way guys and players with PTO's a chance to make the NHL roster, was best for the 25-year-old and son of former Blue Ray Ferraro, who finished his career with the Blues in 2002.

"From everything (the Blues) said to me, they're confident that I had a really good chance of making the team if I came in and did what I did last year," Ferraro said. "It's all you can ask for is a chance and a good opportunity. I feel like there's room here for me.

"I feel like I did a good enough job last year to stay (in Boston), but it's the nature of the business now. They're always trying to improve. They thought they had some players that could step in from the younger core in the American (Hockey) League and do the same job. It's just how it is, and I can't think about it too much. At the end of the day, I'm here and not there and I have a good opportunity in front of me. I'm just looking ahead. ... It's my sixth year pro; I know what I have to do, I know what it takes to get in the league and stay here. I just have to mke sure that I'm skating, that I'm good defensively and get on the PK, just try and let the rest of it take care of itself."

Ferraro, listed as 6-foot, 186 pounds, describes himself in a way that the game is geared towards today and wants to make the decision hard on management when it comes to him at the end of camp.

"A lot of speed, get in on the forecheck," Ferraro said. "Really good defensively. I get a lot of my minutes on the PK and that's where I feel I can help the most. At the same time, contribute here and there to help the team, but mostly just really good defensively and somebody they can rely on in the important parts of the game.

"I just have to make the decision harder for them to send me down. They said I was going to play a lot this preseason and you're about to be two games in and I'm playing both. They held their word on that one. It's nice; you get into it right away."

- - -

Two more additions joined camp Monday morning.

Defenseman Colton Parayko and forward Dmitrij Jaskin, fresh off of playing at the World Cup of Hockey 2016 (Parayko for Team North America and Jaskin for Team Czech Republic), were on the ice with the gameday skaters that will play against Dallas tonight.

Both have been in town for a couple days and took in the 7-3 home victory against Columbus Sunday afternoon.

"It feels like I've been playing for a month already, which I have" Parayko said. "It feels good to be out there already. I'm looking forward to joining the group and hopefully I can add some positives to the group and be helpful."

Neither will play tonight, and Parayko will not lobby coach Ken Hitchcock to play, but he's ready when called upon.

"No, I dont think so," Parayko said laughing. "Anywhere, anytime ... I'll do whatever.

"... I think I'm just going to go to the practices this week and wherever I'm told to be, I'll be."

Parayko said the experience to play in the World Cup was "pretty special. Obviously growing up, I never played in any World Juniors or anything like that. Being on a world stage like that, obviously great players, every team is pretty exciting. Meeting some of the other young players around the league, hopefully we're kind of the future of this league. It's a good opportunity to meet some new friends. ... It was pretty fun."

Team North America, which went 2-1 (beat Finland 4-1 and Sweden 4-3 in overtime, lost to Russia 4-3) but was eliminated from making it to the semifinals, sort of became the darlings of the tournament and obviously fan favorites, something Parayko said he noticed.

"I (felt) like when we (were) playing, the crowd was on our side definitely every single game," Parayko said. "I talked to a lot of people and they said they liked the style we played, with speed and we were fast and stuff like that. We were fun to watch. That's what everyone said. It was fun to play. It was easy to cheer for us, I guess." 

- - -

The Blues announced roster cuts Monday afternoon, with 10 players assigned to the AHL or juniors. 

Players sent to the Chicago Wolves include forwards Emerson Clark, Bryce Gervais, Wade Megan and Brett Sterling, and defensemen Dmitrii Sergeev, Scooter Vaughan and Gus Young.

Heading back to their respective junior teams include forwards Liam Dunda (Sudbury), Tanner Kaspick (Brandon) and goalie Evan Fitzpatrick (Sherbrooke).

Training camp roster has been cut to 57 players, including Alex Pietrangelo and Jay Bouwmeester, who are still with Team Canada at the World Cup of Hockey.

- - -

Here is tonight's lineup to play at Dallas:

Kenny Agostino-David Perron-Ty Rattie

Eric Nystrom-Ivan Barbashev-Ryan Reaves

Magnus Paajarvi-Kyle Brodziak-T.J. Galiardi

Jordan Caron-Glenn Gawdin-Landon Ferraro

Joel Edmundson-Kevin Shattenkirk

Brad Hunt-Jordan Schmaltz

Mike Weber-Robert Bortuzzo

Carter Hutton will start in goal. Ville Husso will back up and see action.

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