If Marc-Andre Fleury wants to be traded, he likely will be. That said, any desire to be moved from the Chicago Blackhawks is very much a maybe and there’s a pretty good chance the veteran netminder decides that moving to a contender isn’t worth the hassle.
According to Frank Seravalli and Mike McKenna of Daily Faceoff, Fleury holds the cards in any trade because he has some trade protection in his contract and because he’s not the kind of player who will simply uproot his family to get himself into a better hockey situation.
When asked if he believes there’s a shot at the Chicago Blackhawks trading Marc-Andre Fleury after a disastrous start to the season, McKenna responded, “You have to think about what Fleury has been through the last year-and-a-half or two years, with Vegas essentially throwing him away to the Chicago Blackhawks after winning the Vezina Trophy.” He added, “Things have gone terrible for Chicago on the ice, but I just can’t help but think Marc-Andrey Fleury will look at this from a family standpoint. What can I do that’s not going to disrupt our family any more than it already has been.”
As many know, Fleury was traded to Chicago in a move that was essentially a salary cap dump trade and it didn’t sit well with Fleury who had grown attached to the city, the franchise and the fan base he helped build as the face of the franchise since their entry into the NHL via expansion. To be thrown away by a team that consistently proves it goes after the flavor of the month in terms of player acquisition was one thing. But, Fleury was cast aside and sent to a team that has been a mess since day one of the 2021-22 season.
Fleury is in the final year of his current contract and one would imagine if the opportunity exists to go to a team that really has a chance at winning the Stanley Cup, he would jump at it. Only, this isn’t just about him. It’s about moving his family again. Fleury is not the kind of player who just leaves his wife and kids behind for a few months as they go wherever he goes. Understandably, he’d be hesitant to move them again.
Seravalli added, “I agree, you said it perfectly. Marc-Andre Fleury will be traded if he wants to be.” Should the season continue to go downhill for Chicago, perhaps that conversation takes place. Seravalli explains:
If he goes to the Blackhawks and says ‘this yeah has been an absolute disaster, I’d like to get out of here,’ I have to think they’d honour that given what his career has been like and given the trust he placed in them before the season started to come there and continue his career.
What Will Fleury Decide?
The question as this season rolls along and the story many insiders will follow leading up to the NHL Trade Deadline is what will Fleury prioritize? Is it a chance to win and get out of a bad situation in Chicago? Or, will he prefer to stay rooted in one place and not move his family again? “His family is along for the ride and is the No. 1 priority for him,” said Seravalli, but there will be teams that show interest.
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