Editorials

5 Defensemen Blackhawks Should Target In Free Agency

By Tony Gianares
TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 27: Jake Gardiner #51 of the Toronto Maple Leafs skates against the Winnipeg Jets during the first period at the Scotiabank Arena on October 27, 2018 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Mark Blinch/NHLI via Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 27: Jake Gardiner #51 of the Toronto Maple Leafs skates against the Winnipeg Jets during the first period at the Scotiabank Arena on October 27, 2018 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Mark Blinch/NHLI via Getty Images) /
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WINNIPEG, MB – APRIL 18: Tyler Myers #57 of the Winnipeg Jets follows the play down the ice during second period action against the St. Louis Blues in Game Five of the Western Conference First Round during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Bell MTS Place on April 18, 2019 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The Blues defeated the Jets 3-2 to lead the series 3-2. (Photo by Darcy Finley/NHLI via Getty Images)
WINNIPEG, MB – APRIL 18: Tyler Myers #57 of the Winnipeg Jets follows the play down the ice during second period action against the St. Louis Blues in Game Five of the Western Conference First Round during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Bell MTS Place on April 18, 2019 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The Blues defeated the Jets 3-2 to lead the series 3-2. (Photo by Darcy Finley/NHLI via Getty Images) /

Tyler Myers

Tyler Myers (29) is a mountain of a man who stands tall at 6’8″ 229 lbs. Myers is right-handed defenseman and a goalie’s best friend, as he routinely wins tie-ups and board battles, and also blocks shots. He has blocked a total of 904 shots in 635 career games. The Blackhawks could definitely use more of that.

Myers is a Top 4 defenseman who would fit in nicely with the Blackhawks and help them get back to their roots, which would be shot blocking. When the Blackhawks were successful, they were blocking shots and playing a smart puck possession game that started in their own zone.

When paired with the right defensive partner, Tyler Myers is a really solid player on both ends of the ice. He can put up his fair share of points too. In 10 seasons, Myers has posted a respectable stat line of 265 points (74G, 191A) in 635 games with a 9 ± rating. He can also contribute on the power play, as he’s currently on the Jets’ 2nd unit.

Myers is another guy who can eat minutes and ease the burden on Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook. He currently has a career ATOI of 22:22. The only concern I have with Myers is that he has been very injury prone in the past. However, StanBo and Co. may be willing to overlook that issue due to the value he provides and limited options. The Blackhawks can use some help on the right side, especially on that top pairing with Keith. Myers might be that guy.

Check out these impressive plays from Tyler Myers.

The Winnipeg Jets currently have 15 players playing on expiring contracts, which include many key contributors like Kevin Hayes, Patrik Laine, Kyle Connor, Jacob Trouba, and more. The Jets will have about $27.372 to fill at least 8 roster spots.

Tyler Myers is currently in the final year of a 7-year, $38.5 mil ($5.5 mil AAV) deal, so the Jets might end up cutting him loose. Myers may very well end up in the $6-7.5 mil AAV range on his next deal.

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