The Chicago Blackhawks missed out on coveted free agent defensemen Mike Reilly Friday afternoon, as he chose to sign with the Minnesota Wild. Although it seemed like the Hawks were the front runners to sign the former Golden Gopher, it’s my understanding that because he was not guaranteed a spot on the NHL roster, he chose the Wild. We all know that Stan Bowman is not in the business of promising children NHL roster spots, as we saw with Kevin Hayes last summer and I don’t blame him at all. Yes, I agree that having Kevin Hayes on the roster this year instead of either Bryan Bickell or Kris Versteeg would’ve been nice, but we did hoist the Stanley Cup so no criticism from me.
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Mike Reilly is no different. Would it be nice to have a defenseman like him manning the blue line next season? Yes, but do you really want a kid who doesn’t really want to have to try to earn himself a roster spot? When we have the likes of Stephen Johns, Michael Paliotta, Ville Pokka, and even big Viktor Svedberg, all of which are willing to work for a spot with the Hawks, I’m not too worried. The Hawks could try to resign Johnny Oduya to a cap friendly deal, which seems unlikely, but is still a possibility. The Hawks could also possibly look to sign a free agent defensemen for the right price. A guy like Matt Irwin could fit the mold for the Hawks. Irwin had eight goals and eleven assists in fifty-three games with the Sharks last season. Irwin is coming off a two year contract where he made 1.1 million dollars last season. If he’d be willing to sign a similar contract with the Hawks he could be a distinct possibility to don the warrior head next season.
I guess Mike Reilly enjoys golf more than he enjoys the game of hockey because he’ll be playing it, while the Hawks are pursuing another Stanley Cup. Don’t worry Hawks fans if history continues to repeat itself we will have the privilege of eliminating Mike Reilly as well as the Wild in one of the first couple rounds of the playoffs. We’ll have a full recap of the draft later and continue to keep you up to date on all of the trade chatter out there. Thanks for reading Hawks fans and don’t forget to follow us on whatever social media you fancy more.
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