St. Louis Blues forward Pat Maroon.

(Sam Masterson, KMOX)

'Big Rig' Ready For Less Life On The Road, Blues Bring Maroon Family Closer

The physical left winger won't have to spend three-five moths away from his son, like he has for the past decade.

July 11, 2018 - 2:19 pm

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - Pat Maroon wants to make a public apology.

He says he's sorry for all the missed phone calls and texts he hasn't replied to. But he's had a lot to think about. 

"I couldn't even eat I was so nervous and stressed out," Maroon says, talking about the moments leading up to his decision to return to his hometown and sign a 1-year $1.75 million contract with the St. Louis Blues. "It's been very stressful, but exciting time. I couldn't choose a better team and it's going to be an awesome year." 

He couldn't even eat a meal from one of St. Louis' great restaurants, Charlie Gitto's Downtown, where Maroon says he was at when he made the call to his agent that he wanted to sign with the Blues. 

Maroon made his first appearance at the Enterprise Center, Wednesday and was asked about the nostalgia he expects to come with suiting up in a Blue note sweather in the coming months. He recalled the games he attend as a kid with his dad, who had two season tickets in the upper bowl at the recently renamed Scottrade Center. As a tribute to his old St. Louis Bandits amateur hockey club, he will wear No. 7 for the Blues to "bring history back." 

But more important than the Maroon family history with the Blues, will be the Maroon's future – including his 9-year-old son, Anthony. You might remember the emotion Maroon showed during the 2016-17 season, when he was shown video of his son celebrating in the stands of Scottrade Center, after his dad scored a goal for the Edmonton Oilers: 

That came during a time, Maroon says, when he hadn't seen in his son in about five months. They won't be separated for more than a couple weeks this season. 

"When I (told Anthony) it was official we both started tearing up a little bit because it's a special thing," Maroon says. "It takes a toll on you as a dad and it's hard being away from your son like that. 

"It's going to be a really cool year for him and watching him his dad play for the St. Louis Blues and seeing him in warmups before every game, it's just it's going to really be a really cool."

And Maroon gets to see his son on the field, court and ice too. 

Related story: Patrick Maroon Predicts 'Special Year' Joining St. Louis Blues

"I get to go to his hockey games when we're not playing," Maroon says. "I'm going to enjoy it. Now I get to sit down and watch my kid play hockey. Now it's no watching through Facetime or watching through videos. Now I get to go to his games and enjoy my time and sit back and watch my son grow."

But the left winger known as "Big Rig" didn't come to St. Louis just for fanfare. He saw the team that president of hockey operations Doug Armstrong was assembling on Day 1 of NHL free agency and wanted in. 

"It kinda made my decision a lot easier," Maroon says. "Down the middle, I think they're the top centermen in the league now ... and you guys got to remember their D-core is really strong too. So the decision was hard, but it was also easy seeing that on paper." 

Maroon says in conversations with Armstrong he was never told exactly what line he would play on or who the Blues believe he might fit in the best with. But Maroon, Ryan O'Reilly, Vladimir Tarasenko up top doesn't sound bad. 

"I can fit in all four lines, wherever you put me I can play," Maroon says. "I can be creative and it's not really just all with skill players, if you put me on the fourth line I can grind it down low and get some energy for the guys."