Blues Re-Sign Brayden Schenn
The St. Louis Blues have re-signed center Brayden Schenn to an eight-year, $52-million contract extension.
SPECTOR’ S NOTE: Schenn, 28, was slated to become an unrestricted free agent next summer. Cap Friendly indicates the annual average value of his new deal is $6.5 million, up from the $5.125 million AAV of his current contract.
Critics will argue the Blues overpaid to keep Schenn in the fold. However, he probably would’ve received a higher salary-cap hit on the open market next summer, considering the Philadelphia Flyers signed Kevin Hayes to a seven-year, $50-million deal this year.
Now in his third season with the Blues, Schenn quickly established himself among their core players. He tallied 70 points in 2017-18 and 54 last season, along with five goals and 12 points in 26 playoff games during their run to the Stanley Cup last spring.
The question now is, how does this affect the Blues’ efforts to re-sign defenseman and team captain Alex Pietrangelo?
Schenn’s deal pushes them to over $73 million invested in 17 players for 2020-21. Considered one of the league’s elite blueliners, the 29-year-old Pietrangelo is also slated to become a UFA in July. He’ll want a significant raise over his current $6.5-million AAV.
General manager Doug Armstrong admitted he’ll have to get creative to retain Schenn and Pietrangelo. That could mean a cost-cutting trade or two before next summer. Otherwise, the Blues could be looking for a new captain after this season.