Jaden Schwartz won’t need an arbitration hearing to decide his contract situation for the upcoming season.
Schwartz, who became a restricted free agent when his two-year deal with the Blues expired on July 1, agreed to a new five-year, $26.75 million contract on Friday afternoon, avoiding an arbitration hearing that was scheduled for Wednesday in Toronto.
The deal will keep Schwartz in St. Louis through the 2020-21 season.
“He’s part of that core we have moving forward,” Blues General Manager Doug Armstrong said. “Schwartz and (Vladimir) Tarasenko, Robby Fabbri, Colton Parayko, Alex Pietrangelo, Jake Allen – we’re trying to build around these guys. Having Schwartz wrapped up in that group, we know we now have a core that we can build around and try to win a championship around.”
Schwartz played in just 33 regular season games in 2015-16 due to a fractured left ankle that sidelined him for 49 games. The 5-foot-10, 190-pound forward scored 22 points (eight goals, 14 assists) in the regular season and ranked third on the club with 14 points (four goals, 10 assists) in 20 playoff games, helping the Blues to the Western Conference Final for the first time since 2001.
Schwartz was originally drafted by the Blues in the first round (14th overall) in the 2010 NHL Draft and has spent his entire five-year career in St. Louis. A two-time 25-goal scorer, Schwartz has accumulated 157 points (70 goals, 87 assists in 240 career regular season games and 21 points (six goals, 15 assists) in 38 career playoff outings.
The Wilcox, Saskatchewan native is a two-time medal winner with Team Canada, earning silver at the 2011 World Juniors and bronze at the 2012 World Junior’s as the team’s captain.
“These are guys that you’ve drafted. You’ve developed them and you’d like to keep them here,” Armstrong said.