Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Blues sign Chorney to a one-year contract

By Andrew Allsman| Posted: June 18, 2013| Contact  |

The Blues were able to lock up some defensive depth on Tuesday as the club announced the signing of defenseman Taylor Chorney. Chorney and the Blues agreed to a one-year, two-way contract; Chorney was the first unrestricted free agent the Blues have agreed to terms with so far in the offseason's early stages.

Chorney's signing is not major news. He was a player the Blues want for depth purposes, and while the signing doesn't mean much right now for the National Hockey League club, it was a signing that ensures the Blues have adequate depth at the defensive position heading into the 2013-14 campaign. 

Chorney, 26, was with the Blues' American Hockey League affiliate club, the Peoria Rivermen, all of last season. He had 24 points (four goals, 20 assists) in 73 games. Chorney signed a one-year, two-way contract with the Blues last offseason, and was making $105,000 playing in the AHL.

Chorney is no stranger to the Blues' system. He was claimed off of waivers by the Blues during the 2011-12 season due to a decimated Blues' defense. He played in two NHL games with the Blues that year, but was reclaimed by the Edmonton Oilers when the Blues were forced to send Chorney back to the AHL. The Blues opted to sign Chorney last season, and then re-sign him this season. While Chorney is not going to see much NHL time, he is a good depth player for a club that has been known to be injury prone in the past.

Chorney has played in 61 career NHL games, amassing seven points (one goal, six assists).

This contract will be Chorney's third since his three-year entry-level deal expired. Chorney has not been signed for longer than one season in any of his last three contracts.. 

While getting some of the depth contracts out of the way, Blues general manager Doug Armstrong has a big task at hand in locking up his current star defensemen in Alex Pietrangelo and Kevin Shattenkirk. Both players will be looking for hefty pay raises this offseason. Armstrong hopes to get both locked up as soon as possible, but is in no particular rush. Pietrangelo and Shattenkirk are among the Blues' five restricted free agents. So far, the Blues have locked up just one other defenseman, and that was Ian Cole who was signed to a two-year, one-way contract earlier this offseason.