By Allan Muir
The St. Louis Blues are all in.
Gearing up for a run at their first Stanley Cup in franchise history, the Blues swung a blockbuster five-player deal tonight with the Buffalo Sabres, acquiring franchise goaltender Ryan Miller and team captain Steve Ott.
In exchange, the Blues sent goaltender Jaroslav Halak, forward Chris Stewart and prospect William Carrier to the Sabres, along with a first-round draft pick in 2015 and a third-round draft pick in 2016.
Buffalo will also cover the difference between the salaries of Miller and Halak, approximately $1.75 million.
This is a bold, game-changing move by GM Doug Armstrong, one that not only legitimizes the Blues as a Cup front-runner, but also throws down the gauntlet and dares other challengers to ante up.