Jaden Schwartz

Prized Blues prospect Schwartz to make NHL debut Saturday

Jaden Schwartz, the collegiate scoring sensation and St. Louis’ first pick at the 2010 draft, will make his NHL debut on Saturday when the Blues take on the Lightning.

“You’re definitely pretty nervous,” Schwartz said after his first practice with the club. “I was excited but obviously really nervous. So I tried to control that as best I could and tried to have fun with it.”

To be accurate, news of Schwartz’s debut isn’t exactly, um, news. When he signed his three-year entry-level deal earlier in the week, Ken Hitchcock said the 19-year-old would debut against Tampa Bay.

What Hitch didn’t say is that Schwartz would be getting top-six minutes.

That opportunity presented itself after Andy McDonald suffered a “shoulder contusion” against Carolina on Thursday, opening up a spot for an offensively-minded forward — a role Schwartz is quite familiar with. In two seasons with Colorado College, he notched 88 points in 60 games; he also captained Canada’s bronze-medal winning team at the 2012 Word Junior Hockey Championships (five points in six games.)

According to Derek Goold of St. Louis Today, Schwartz will skate on the Blues’ second line with Patrik Berglund and Jamie Langenbrunner. (Fun fact: When Langenbrunner made his NHL debut in 1995, Schwartz was three.)

“I know what he can do,” Hitchcock said of Schwartz. “I mean transition-wise, from a terminology standpoint, this is going to be easy for Jaden. It’s the same terminology Don [Hay, Canada’s head coach] used in the World Juniors. So, hopefully, he’s going to feel comfortable right away.

“He’s a very responsible player, and I don’t think you can have enough of those guys at any time. Don said he was great killing penalties, out there at the start and end of hockey games, knew where to go on the ice. Smart guy.”

‘Yotes return Dylan Strome to OHL

Dylan Strome, Nikita Nikitin
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The Arizona Coyotes have returned Dylan Strome to the Erie Otters of the OHL.

Strome, 18, was the third overall pick in the 2015 NHL draft.

The 6’3, 185 pounder was hoping to stick with the Coyotes this season, but the team decided to take the conservative approach with their top prospect.

Strome will look to build off an incredible junior season that saw him score 45 goals and 129 points in 68 games.

Strome seems to be taking the demotion in stride.

The team also announced that they’ve assigned goaltender Louis Domingue and forward Matthias Plachta to their AHL affiliate in Springfield.

Domingue, 23, had a 1-2-1 record with a 2.73 goals-against-average and a .911 save percentage in seven games last season.

Plachta, a free agent signing, will begin his first pro season in North America. The 24-year-old had 14 goals and 35 points in the German League last season.


Detroit places Datsyuk and three others on I.R.

Pavel Datsyuk,
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The Red Wings have placed Pavel Datsyuk, Darren Helm, Danny DeKeyser and Alexey Marchenko on injured reserve.

Placing these players on I.R. opens up four more roster spots for Detroit.

The Red Wings have suffered an incredibe amount of injuries heading into the season.

Datsyuk (ankle) is expected to be out until November.

DeKeyser (foot) is going to miss three-to-four weeks, while Helm (concussion) and Marchenko (lower-body) are considered day-to-day.

The team also announced that they have reduced their training camp roster to 27 players on Sunday.

Top prospect Dylan Larkin remains in camp for now.

Coach Jeff Blashill told reporters that the 19-year-old has looked good, but a final decision hasn’t been made on where he will play this year.

As for Larkin, he’s just fed up of living in a hotel.

“There’s been so much speculation and so many questions, and no one really knows,” said Larkin. “Maybe the coaches know, but just to find out where I’ll be living or what’s happening — I’m kind of sick of the hotel. It would be nice to know what’s going on.”