St. Louis Blues Prospect Scott Perunovich Wins Hobey Baker

Scott Perunovich
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University of Minnesota-Duluth junior defenceman Scott Perunovich earned the Hobey Baker Award late Saturday night. The announcement was made on the late edition of ESPN’s SportsCenter.

Scott Perunovich Wins Hobey Baker

The St. Louis Blues prospect beat out Jeremy Swayman and Jordan Kawaguchi to win the award. Perunovich is the sixth Bulldogs player to win the award and first since Jack Connolly in 2012.

The Hibbing, Minn. native scored 40 points in 34 games and 105 in 115 career games. He finished with the second-most points for a defenceman in NCAA Division I. Perunovich was a first-team All-American in his freshman and junior seasons. He made the second team in his sophomore campaign.

The Blues drafted him in the second round, 45th overall of the 2018 NHL Draft. He signed a two-year deal in March that will start this season if play does resume.

His uncle, Doug Perunovich, was drafted by the Vancouver Canucks in the 1987 NHL Draft.

What it Means for the Future

There was a little concern that he would hit the free agent market in Aug. However, the Blues signed him and look to add him to a solid defence group. St. Louis does have to re-sign Alex Pietrangelo in the off-season, but things are hopeful.

Perunovich is great at both ends of the ice and controlled the game at the college level. He’s a very good skater and has good vision and playmaking skills. There are concerns about his size at 5-foot, 10-inches and 175 pounds. However, his skills have overshadowed some of those question marks.

His coach has described Perunovich’s game in the mold of Boston Bruins defenceman Torey Krug. Bulldogs coach Scott Sandelin has described his player as a “fourth forward” with his style of play.

He could be a hidden gem like a Cale Makar was for the Colorado Avalanche in last season’s playoffs. That is provided if play does resume after the COVID-19 outbreak settles.