Blues release Whitney, Bissonnette - KMOV.com

Blues release Whitney, Bissonnette

(HockeySTL)-- The two players invited to the Blues’ training camp on tryout contracts have been released by the club.

Neither defenseman Ryan Whitney nor forward Paul Bissonnette was offered a contract to stay with St. Louis, and with the cutoff for roster finalization being on Tuesday, the two were released to become unrestricted free agents.

Whitney, 31, has been with the Blues for each of their last two training camps, attending both on a tryout basis. The defenseman had appeared in one preseason game this year after being brought in to address the club’s initial worry about defensive depth.

Whitney would not accept a two-way contract last season and likely had the same mindset this year. With seven defensemen locked into NHL slots, Whitney would have had to concede to such a deal to stay with the Blues.

In a similar position was Bissonnette, who appeared in two of the Blues’ seven preseason games. The 29-year-old enforcer had a decent training camp, but there was no room for him at the NHL level with an influx of forward depth added this offseason.

“Tough team to make,” Bissonnette said earlier this week. “Guys have one-way contracts and stuff. I just come and work and let the rest take care of itself.”

The forward was released a day after Whitney as the Blues prepare for more weekend roster cuts. In addition, goaltender Matt Climie was assigned to the Blues’ AHL affiliate Chicago Wolves Saturday afternoon.

Following the three transactions, the Blues’ roster is at 30 players. The final 23-man roster has to be set by 5:00 p.m. CT Tuesday.

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