ST. LOUIS -- The Blues officially unveiled their 2017 Bridgestone Winter Classic jersey Wednesday morning, but the luster was a little off-kilter after a "leak" by the NHL mistakenly put the jersey on its shop last Thursday and quickly taken down.
But by then, screenshots from admiring fans and the like already had a look at what the uniform will look like, and it's of the old retro look of the inaugural 1967-68 season.
|(St. Louis Blues photo)|
Blues captain Alex Pietrangelo models the Blues' Winter Classic jersey.
"It's great. It kind of goes back to the days of Bobby (Pager) and those guys," said Blues captain Alex Pietrangelo, who modeled the uniform. "Those guys are what started everything here in St. Louis. I guess we kind of carry that new tradition on of the Winter Classic. I know those guys like it, I think everybody in here likes it. It's pretty neat. I'm sure they're going to be big sellers.
"The old-school logo, they're comfortable, too. The old-school look, I think all of it adds up to the pretty impressive thing overall."
As for the modeling ...
"That part wasn't as fun," Pietrangelo joked. "A lot of standing around. ... I think most of us saw the leak, quote-unquote. I kind of had an idea of what they were going to look like. To see it and the pictures afterwards, it's pretty cool."
The opinions were unanimous in the Blues locker room.
"I haven't really seen them yet, but it's a pretty cool thing," forward Alexander Steen said. "I like going back to old-school jerseys as opposed to this modern (style). It's not my thing.
"The history of the game, there's a reason why we are where we are. I think that's such a key part, especially events like this, but even like moving forward as a league, I think that's something that we can never let go. I'm a bigger fan of those jerseys than the new, modern ones."
It went over well with coach Ken Hitchcock, too.
"I like those," Hitchcock said. "The most iconic picture for me of St. Louis Blues is the picture with Jacques Plante in his goalie gear in that same color sweater, and I've said that to Tom (Stillman) and Chris Zimmerman; I really love this color sweater. I think it's terrific. I think it's going to go right off the shelf to be honest with you. I think it's a great color, a great combination. It's really classic style. It's the color I remember from the Blues when they were there in the 60s. It's a really neat uniform to be honest with you."
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The Blues (7-4-2), who host the Chicago Blackhawks (9-3-1) at 7 p.m. (NBCSN, KMOX 1120-AM), will insert defenseman Petteri Lindbohm in for Joel Edmundson, who will miss at least three weeks with an upper-body injury.
Lindbohm, who had no points in five games with the American Hockey League's Chicago Wolves, will make his season debut. In 33 NHL games, Lindbohm has two goals and one assist.
"I really like what he brings to our team," Hitchcock said of Lindbohm. "If we can find a way to get him to calm down early in games, the way he plays in second parts of games, the second two-thirds of games is really helpful. He's got an edge, he's got a competitive level that's through the roof. But sometimes that competitive level, if we can just calm it down, dial it down a little bit, I think we're going to be in real good shape because he wants to have an impact right away in games and sometimes you run around and chase out of position and you get caught doing that stuff. If he plays a very calm game like he does in the second half of all these games, he's going to really, really help us."
Other than Lindbohm for Edmundson, the lineup, including Jake Allen in goal, will stay the same.
Nail Yakupov is expected to be a healthy scratch for a third straight game.
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The Blues' projected lineup:
Alexander Steen-Patrik Berglund-David Perron
Jaden Schwartz-Jori Lehtera-Vladimir Tarasenko
Robby Fabbri-Paul Stastny-Dmitrij Jaskin
Scottie Upshall-Kyle Brodziak-Ryan Reaves
Jay Bouwmeester-Alex Pietrangelo
Carl Gunnarsson-Kevin Shattenkirk
Petteri Lindbohm-Colton Parayko
Jake Allen will start in goal; Carter Hutton will be the backup.
The healthy scratch is Nail Yakupov. Robert Bortuzzo (lower body) and Joel Edmundson (upper body) are on injured-reserve.
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The Blackhawks' projected lineup:
Nick Schmaltz-Jonathan Toews-Patrick Kane
Artemi Panarin-Artem Anisimov-Marian Hossa
Ryan Hartman-Marcus Kruger-Richard Panik
Andrew Desjardins-Dennis Rasmussen-Jordin Tootoo
Duncan Keith-Brian Campbell
Michal Kempny-Brent Seabrook
Gustav Forsling-Niklas Hjalmarsson
Corey Crawford will start in goal; Scott Darling will be the backup.
Vincent Hinostroza is the healthy scratch. Trevor van Riemsdyk (upper body), Tyler Motte (lower body) are out with injuries.