Blues Ink Oshie to Five-Year Contract
St. Louis, MO
The St. Louis Blues and center T.J. Oshie avoided going through the process of salary arbitration after they agreed to a five-year deal Friday with an average annual salary of $4.175 million.
"I couldn't be any happier to re-sign with the Blues, where I've grown as a player and as a pro," Oshie said. "As far as the long-term security goes, it's something I've never had in my career. It's nice to have that security, but I want to keep getting better every day and definitely better every year."
A restricted free agent, Oshie had filed for arbitration several weeks ago. The hearing, which was set for Friday morning in Toronto, was avoided with the new agreement.
"We're obviously excited to have T.J. under contract as he enters the prime of his career," General Manager Doug Armstrong said on a media conference call Friday. "To know that we're going to have him through that portion at a minimum is very rewarding to our team.
"We think he was a big piece of our team last year and think he will be a big piece moving forward," he added.
"I definitely wanted to get a deal done. St. Louis is where I want to be and where I want to be for a long time, so that was my No. 1 goal," Oshie said.
Oshie played in 80 games last season and finished tied for the overall team lead in points (54) with captain David Backes. He tied for third in goals (19), second in assists (35) and ranked second among Blues forwards with 19:31 of ice time per game.
The 5-foot-11 center has spent each of his four career National Hockey League (NHL) seasons with the Blues, amassing 175 points (63 goals and 112 assists) to go along with 131 penalty minutes in 262 games.
"It means the world to me," Oshie said of being retained as a core member of the Blues. "I always want to be the best team guy that I can be...You look at the core guys on this team and every one of those guys is a team-first guy. To be included in that group, I can't say enough about how proud I am to be there."
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