Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Blues, Colaiacovo agree to two-year contract

Deal expected to be announced today for defenseman to remain
in St. Louis; Janssen files for arbitration, Halak, King do not

ST. LOUIS -- Unless the Blues pull an about-face, Carlo Colaiacovo won't be leaving St. Louis for at least a couple seasons.

Colaiacovo, who became an unrestricted free agent on July 1, has come to terms on a two-year contract that will pay the 27-year-old defenseman $4.25 million to remain with the Blues. The deal is expected to be announced today.

Colaiacovo will receive a reported $1.75 million for the upcoming season and $2.5 million in 2011-12.

Colaiacovo and fellow veteran defenseman Mike Weaver both hit the free agent market last week and were free to sign elsewhere. But Colaiacovo, who tallied seven goals and 25 assists in 67 games and was one of the top offensive-defensemen on the roster last season, will remain where he wanted to be all along.

"I'm really happy where I am. I really enjoy playing here," Colaiacovo said towards the end of last season. "I'm happy playing for this organization. This organization's done a lot for me. It's really put a smile on my face to be here."

Colaiacovo, who has 10 goals and 61 points in two seasons since being acquired along with Alex Steen from Toronto for Lee Stempniak in 2008, solidifies a Blues defensive unit that would have looked really raw in NHL experience if he and Weaver, 32, both left via free agency.

"I don't want to look past anywhere but being here," Colaiacovo said in February. "I enjoy my surroundings and playing in front of a great fan base and friends and playing on a great team."

* NOTES -- Elsewhere, Blues enforcer Cam Janssen, who is one of three Blues (Jaroslav Halak and D.J. King being the others) eligible for salary arbitration, filed on Monday. King and Halak both chose not to file.

It may come as a surprise that Halak, acquired on June 17 for minor league prospects Lars Eller and Ian Schultz, did not file for salary arbitration since Halak, 25, came off his best season in the NHL. He made $800,000 last season.

Halak was 26-13-5 with a 2.40 goals-against average during the regular season for Montreal and helped lead the Canadiens to the Eastern Conference final this past season.

Janssen, a Eureka, Mo. native who is seeking a multi-year contract, was reportedly offered a one-year deal.

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