Chicago Blackhawks: Salary Cap Speculation

By Brian Kasnicka

With the 2015 NHL Draft less than a week away the trade winds are swirling around the Chicago Blackhawks.   Someone has to go in order to accommodate Toews and Kane’s contract extensions as well as new deals for both Brandon Saad and Marcus Kruger.  Sharp, is the most notable Blackhawk that has been rumored to be traded.  The initial asking price for Sharp is rumored to be a top six forward still on an entry level contract, a top prospect, and a first round pick.  If Sharp fetches said asking price, it would be quite the haul for a team with little leverage.  Is Sharp the only Blackhawk who will be moved?  Or does Bowman have a trick up his sleeve?

Bryan Bickell

It’s no secret that Bickell and his four million dollar contract are on the trade block.  The trick with Bickell is finding a team willing to take on all of his contract.  He doesn’t have a high trade value after a sub par playoff as well as regular season, but a team that needs a big bodied bottom six forward would jump at him for the right price.  Teams that could be interested include Carolina, Arizona, and even possibly Edmonton.

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Kris Versteeg

Versteeg is a guy who could fetch a decent return from the right team.  Although Versteeg doesn’t have much of a cap hit at 2.2 million dollars, he can be replaced by a much cheaper option.  Any chance Bowman has to shed unnecessary salary during the off-season, I’m sure he will.  A team like the Pittsburgh Penguins could be in the market for Versteeg, since they are trying to find an experienced winger to play with Evgeni Malkin.  Penguins General Manager Jim Rutherford could give Stan Bowman a call to see what it would take to acquire the winger.

Corey Crawford

Before you stop reading just hear me out.  This is just the first salary purge the Hawks will be facing.  Next season, unless the salary cap goes up significantly, Bowman and the Hawks will likely have to shed more salary in order to re-sign Mr. Overtime, Brent Seabrook.  Corey Crawford’s trade value has never been higher after winning his second Stanley Cup.  A team like Edmonton or Buffalo would love to have a proven veteran goalie like Corey Crawford.  If the Hawks could acquire say, Leon Draisiatl, Oscar Klefbom, and possibly a pick, I would be on board.  I for one have a tremendous amount of confidence in a Darling-Raanta tandem.  I don’t see Bowman trading Crawford, but I’m just saying that it is an option.

This next week all of these rumors will come to light and we will see who will not be wearing a Hawks sweater next year.  Thanks for reading Hawks fans and feel free to comment your thoughts on who the Hawks should trade and what they should get for said player.

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