Monday, March 12, 2012
SCHWARTZ TO SIGN WITH BLUES
Jaden Schwartz will sign with the Blues – the team that drafted him in the first round in 2010 – as early as Tuesday, sources familiar with Schwartz’s decision told The Gazette. The Blues have had discussions with Schwartz, sources said, since CC suffered a season-ending defeat Saturday to Michigan Tech in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs. Neither Schwartz nor CC coach Scott Owens returned phone and text messages.
If Schwartz sticks with the NHL-leading Blues for their playoff run, his contract would pay $700,000 a year, and if he winds up with the Peoria (Ill.) Rivermen of the American Hockey League, it would net $250,000 a year. Either way, his contract would be prorated based on the length of time he’s on the roster – a contract being negotiated by an adviser to Schwartz, whose NCAA eligibility is gone once he signs a pro deal or hires an agent.
Schwartz feels he’s ready to make the jump after a productive season in which he led CC with 41 points, including 15 goals and a team-high 26 assists. He had four game-winners, and five of his goals came on the power play, as he marked a point in 26 of his 30 games – he missed six games to captain his native Canada at the world junior championships.
Earlier, Schwartz said his late sister, Mandi, always told him to follow his heart. He’s not the biggest guy, at 5-foot-10 and 188 pounds, however, he possesses sharp instincts, he’s patient, he’s unselfish and he owns good vision. Plus, he’s a playmaker, like his brother, a junior center who recorded 40 points, including a team-best 23 goals, with a national-best 11 on the power play. Rylan Schwartz has attracted interest from the Blues, sources said, but he wasn’t drafted in the NHL, so he can sign with any team if he wants to leave CC.