- Associated Press - Friday, November 11, 2011

ST. LOUIS (AP) - The St. Louis Blues added one of new coach Ken Hitchcock’s favorites from his former team, acquiring defenseman Kris Russell from the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The Blue Jackets got defenseman Nikita Nikitin in a deal after the Blues’ 3-2 overtime loss to the Maple Leafs Thursday night that wasn’t made official until Friday.

The 24-year-old Russell has two goals, an assist and 13 penalty minutes in 12 games with Columbus. Russell has played in 288 NHL games over five seasons, all with Columbus, and has 79 points (18 goals, 61 assists). He was a third-round draft pick in 2005.

The 25-year-old Nikitin has no points and minus-5 in seven games with St. Louis. He was a healthy scratch in eight of the last nine games. A fifth-round pick in 2004, Nikitin has one goal and eight assists in 41 games, all with St. Louis.

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