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Lack of Return for Certain Players Could Lead to Kane, Toews Trades

Is it time the Chicago Blackhawks think about the long-term future of the team and does it mean moving pieces that will fetch strong returns?

In a recent article for The Athletic, Mark Lazerus took another look at the storylines coming out of the Chicago Blackhawks organization. There’s no shortage of topics to discuss when it comes to this franchise and there’s a serious consideration to tearing it all down and starting fresh in the wake of sexual abuse allegations, a struggling team, and players being closer to the end of their careers than in their prime.

Related: Rangers May Look to Add Forward On Expiring Deal Ahead of Deadline

Among the many topics covered by Lazerus were trade rumors this season — names like Dominik Kubalik, Dylan Strome, and goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury were mentioned — and what the organization should do with players like Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews. Because Lazerus believes the Blackhawks have looked into moving Strome but have been unable to land a mid-round pick for the forward, and because moving Kubalik like won’t land them a first-round pick, Chicago may have to look at bigger moves.

There are three players on the current roster (Kane, Toews, and Seth Jones) that will make over $9.5 million next season. The Blackhawks need to find room to re-sign Alex DeBrincat, who will be pending RFA in two seasons and the team doesn’t have much in the way of solid draft picks unless they land in the bottom two spots in the draft lottery. Perhaps moving Kane or Toews is the best way to restock the cupboards.

Chicago Blackhawks trade rumors
Chicago Blackhawks trade rumors

Lazerus looked at positive and negatives to the notion of moving on and noted that it’s unlikely the Blackhawks can afford to keep both players with a pending DeBrincat deal, their pending contract extensions would be a distraction next season if the Blackhawks didn’t sign them right away and neither player is likely to take big discounts to stay. He adds:

If Davidson — or whoever is in charge by then — really wants to build a sustainable, forward-thinking team, it might not be wise to tie that team to a very expensive player well into his late-30s [Toews] or beyond.

Time to Think About the Blackhawks’ Future?

If the Blackhawks want to start fresh because this season turns into a loss, the easiest way to do it isn’t by trading smaller pieces that don’t get a significant return. The best way to get where they want to be quickly and build towards long-term success is to move on from the icons of the past and present and think about who could be the future icons on this team.

Next: Canadiens Not Tanking Season Likely Due to “Marc Bergevin Factor”



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