Expect Jaden Schwartz ice time to increase

This notebook item is taken from a daily notebook by StlToday.com. There’s plenty of info on the Blues’ injuries to point toward more ice time for former Tiger Jaden Schwartz when he plays again on Wednesday.

SCHWARTZ’S ICE TIME

Overall, Blues rookie Jaden Schwartz had an impressive debut Saturday, scoring a goal on his first shot in the NHL. But what impressed Hitchcock was the ability to give Schwartz 13 minutes, 50 seconds of ice time and not blink.

“I think, to me, when you don’t even think about putting a young player on the ice, and you don’t worry about him, that’s a really good sign,” Hitchcock said. “I know he’s 19 years old, but I just put him on the ice because he’s a good player, and that’s all I think about. I don’t think about ‘Man, you’ve got to protect this guy.’ He just goes out and plays.

“He’s able to do that because he’s smart. I think he’s a very, very dependable guy. I’m very comfortable playing him. He knows where to go on the ice with and without the puck.”

Schwartz saw 1:38 of power-play ice time, scoring his goal on the man-advantage by going to the front of the net and cleaning up a rebound. It wasn’t the only time Schwartz camped in the high-traffic area during the game, another surprising development for some.

“I’m not going to change the way I play or change the way I do things,” Schwartz said Sunday, after returning to St. Louis. “I’ve just learned and taught to play the way I am … you’ve got to go to the net to score goals. The defensemen are so good and the goalies are so good. You’re not going to score a whole lot of pretty goals. Some guys have got the talent to do that, but for a guy like me, his first game, I just try to stick within the system. You just go to the net.”

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About paisleyhockey
I am a freelance writer specializing in sports with 20-plus years of experience.

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