ST. LOUIS -- Alex Pietrangelo sat in front of his computer talking to the media for the first time as a defenseman for the Vegas Golden Knights on Tuesday.
Sounds strange, doesn't it?
It was almost printed in this space as 'defenseman and captain of the Blues,' because it's been something done regularly for the past 12 years. But alas, here we are, talking about former Blues defenseman and captain since 2016 after Pietrangelo put pen to paper on a seven-year, $61.6 million contract with an average annual value of $8.8 million to join Vegas.
|(St. Louis Blues photo)|
Alex Pietrangelo will go down as the first captain in Blues
history to hoist the Cup when St. Louis won it all in 2019.
"Yeah, I guess playing against them every time we came into Vegas, obviously a difficult place to play being the visiting player, obviously the atmosphere," Pietrangelo said. "I think everybody agrees it's probably the best place to play in the NHL right now. Team-wise, it's a difficult team to play against. I think top to bottom, everyone knows their role, well-coached, good goaltending, good balance and I think coming from a team that played a similar style, it's definitely a difficult one to play against. I think that's part of the reason that brought me here is that it fits into my style, they play the game the way that I think it should be played. You want to go somewhere where you feel comfortable and then you can help. I think going into a system the way Pete (DeBoer) coaches, it's going to allow me to do that.
"We're friends with the Stastnys, really close friends. We had asked them about it and what they thought and obviously Reavo too. Him and I are really good friends. Between them two, then we flew out there, we went to go see the Stastnys, we felt like they said all the right things. They spoke extremely high of the organization, the way players are treated, the way families are treated and more importantly, the way wives are treated. It certainly helped us make a decision knowing that everyone's taken care of."
|(St. Louis Blues photo)|
Alex Pietrangelo (27) is leaving the Blues after 12 years when he signed a
seven-year contract Monday to join the Vegas Golden Knights.
"We still have a house here. I'm going to be here. Probably will come back in the summers and skate with these guys. I'm around the city. I'm all friends with them. They understand. I've talked to them and I'm looking forward to catching up with them. I haven't seen them since last week. We'll probably get out and play some golf together. When you develop relationships and you go through what we went through last year, you become friends for life. The good part about Vegas for us too is, part of the decision was it's easy to get on a flight and get back to St. Louis if my wife wants to come home and see her family. That certainly played a part in it and having that access for us."