Jaden Schwartz spent the last season in total misery...

Published August 23, 2021 at 3:14 PM

New Seattle Kraken forward Jaden Schwartz went through what few players have the misfortune to experience last year... A worldwide pandemic and the death of a parent... Last November, the Canadian skater faced the realities of life when his father passed away just before the start of the 2020-2021 season.

The former St. Louis Blues color guard even came close to dropping out of the final season, as well as giving up on his salary. He clearly wasn't thinking about hockey, considering he couldn't be there for his family when his father passed away.

"I didn't even know if I was going to come back to the game. Last season was extremely difficult for me and my family. I didn't have the motivation to play or even practice."

"It was hard to let go of my family and friends, considering they needed me and I needed them."

However, he still decided to play in the 2020-2021 season because he knew his father would have wanted him to play. Plus, he didn't want to leave his teammates behind.

"I wanted to be there for my teammates. I know my family really enjoys watching me play hockey and my dad really would have wanted me to come back to the game. I did it mostly for them, but it wasn't easy. I think my teammates knew I wasn't 100 percent."

Still, Schwartz strung together 21 points in 40 regular season games, which is very reasonable. However, he recorded no points in the first round of the playoffs against the Colorado Avalanche...

"I did everything I could to help the team, but mentally and physically I wasn't at my best. It was the hardest year I've ever had in my life. I didn't finish my deal with the Blues very well and I'm sorry about that, but I clearly wasn't ready to play a season of hockey last year."

After playing the first 10 years of his career in Missouri, he is ready for this new chapter in his career with the Seattle Kraken.

"I feel much better mentally now. I've been able to train properly this year. I feel ready. Seattle is such a good city. Being part of an expansion team brings a very special feeling to me."

Schwartz obviously went through hell last year... Once again, it proves that professional athletes are human, after all. They go through things that very few people have the misfortune to experience. Imagine in times of a global pandemic...
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