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Chicago Blackhawks: Nick Seeler Claimed With No Use

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NEW YORK, NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 10: Nick Seeler #36 of the Minnesota Wild holds up Anders Lee #27 of the New York Islanders during the third period at the Barclays Center on February 10, 2019 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 10: Nick Seeler #36 of the Minnesota Wild holds up Anders Lee #27 of the New York Islanders during the third period at the Barclays Center on February 10, 2019 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /
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The Chicago Blackhawks claimed Nick Seeler weeks ago. If they don’t play him, this could have been a waste of time.

This time of year, a lot of people are discussing trades that could potentially occur around the league. There is no shortage on this topic when it comes to the Chicago Blackhawks. However, beyond the trade deadline, other moves are being made within the organization.

Six games ago, on Feb. 3, 2020, the Blackhawks claimed Nick Seeler off waivers from the Minnesota Wild. Personally, was a bit surprised by this and found myself asking, “why?”

Did they need a guy to sit in the press box? Seeler was pretty good at that for Minnesota, and now he’s carrying on in that role for Chicago.

Some writers, such as Michael Russo at The Athletic suggested that Seeler was being picked up as a depth player for Chicago.  Russo also said, “In one year with the Gophers, Seeler gained a reputation of playing a hard brand of hockey with a propensity of walking right up to the line and sometimes over it.”

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The Blackhawks already have Dennis Gilbert, a defenseman with this kind of physical reputation, but he’s currently playing in the AHL. How many of these guys do they need? Especially when neither one is playing meaningful minutes in Chicago?

Depth or not, Seeler has played only once for Chicago. At this point, unless there’s a trade involving a defenseman, there doesn’t appear to have been a reason to have claimed Seeler. He’d have to go through waivers again to be assigned to Rockford, and his lack of playing time implies that might be where he’s headed.

If the Blackhawks aren’t going to play him, and decide to wait until after the trade deadline to send him down to Rockford, he’s just taking up a roster spot. That is unless there is some kind of trade already in the works. The trade deadline isn’t very far away, but claiming Seeler makes me think that there’s a deal brewing.

Fortunately, we likely won’t have to wait too much longer to find out.

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