Central

Robert Bortuzzo Has Impressed St. Louis Blues

Robert Bortuzzo Has Impressed St. Louis Blues
Franklin Steele

Robert Bortuzzo never seemed to get a fair shake with the Pittsburgh Penguins. Dan Bylsma never hesitated to scratch the feisty defenseman in favor of guys like Simon Despres (now with the Anaheim Ducks), and when Mike Johnston took over this summer, he made it clear that he wanted his defenseman to be of the puck moving variety.

Moving the puck up ice with haste was never Bortuzzo’s meal ticket, and it wasn’t surprising to see the Penguins trade him to the St. Louis Blues for Ian Cole this season. Despite a wealth of talent on the blue line, Blues’ head coach Ken Hitchcock won’t be putting Bortuzzo in the press box agian anytime soon.

The veteran bench boss spoke to Jeremy P. Rutherford of The St. Louis Post-Dispatch about what Bortuzzo means to the Blues on a nightly basis and had this to say:

I think we see what he means to the team. There’s an edge, there’s a competitiveness, he’s a good player…. Bortuzzo in our lineup makes us a lot better right now.

The 26-year-old hasn’t been a mainstay in St. Louis and has been scratched a few times, but he seemed to really key the Blues in their recent 4-1 win over the Calgary Flames. As Rutherford points out in his post, the team is now 6-3-1 with Bortuzzo in the lineup.

It might be something that certain pundits discount entirely, but it can really bring a locker room together when one player sticks up for another. That’s exactly what Bortuzzo did against the Flames, fighting Brandon Bollig after he leveled Barret Jackman with a questionable hit.

Fighting might be on the decline in the NHL overall, but Bortuzzo did the right by going after Bollig. Hitchcock and the Blues seem to be of that mind, and fans of the team might want to get used to seeing Bortuzzo more often as the playoffs are just around the corner.

Central
Franklin Steele
@FranklinSteele

Franklin Steele has been watching and playing hockey since the age of six. He’s written for a variety of NHL websites around the web, and now is the director of content and growth for TodaysSlapshot.com. A lot of folks say they are living the dream sarcastically. He is not among them. Feel free to email him or Tweet at him with any questions, comments or concerns.

More in Central

NHL: FEB 08 Blackhawks at Blues

Get Ready For Plenty of Blues vs Blackhawks

Pavel KofmanApril 4, 2015
Nichushkin

Valeri Nichushkin Has Big Impact on the Stars

Luke LapinskiApril 4, 2015
NHL: JAN 10 Jets at Kings

Burning Questions for Each NHL Central Team

Mark HarrisApril 3, 2015
NHL: APR 02 Flames at Blues

St. Louis Blues Have Playoff Demons to Slay

Andy DudonesApril 3, 2015
NHL: FEB 22 Stars at Wild

Devan Dubnyk As Masterton Nominee is No Surprise

Cat SilvermanApril 2, 2015
NHL: FEB 12 Panthers at Wild

NHL Central Division Power Rankings: Wild Remain On Top

Mark HarrisApril 2, 2015
AHL: FEB 21 Rockford IceHogs at Lake Erie Monsters

Scott Darling Gets Much-Deserved Masterson Nomination

Cat SilvermanApril 1, 2015
NHL: FEB 22 Bruins at Blackhawks

Analyzing Possible First-Round Matchups for Blackhawks

Luke LapinskiMarch 31, 2015

Goalie Drama Brewing for St. Louis Blues

Pavel KofmanMarch 31, 2015

YOUR HOCKEY YOUR WAY, BE SEEN BE HEARD BE A SLAPSHOT FAN TODAY! PART OF THE FANRAG SPORTS NETWORK

Slapshot on Facebook

Slapshot On Twitter

Copyright © 2014 Today’s Slapshot, All Rights Reserved. | Terms of Use/Privacy | Copyright | Site Map | About Us | Authors | Contact Us