The Chicago Blackhawks have traded defenseman Erik Gustafsson to the Calgary for a third-round pick.
It was a long time coming but the Chicago Blackhawks have traded offensive defenseman Erik Gustafsson to the Calgary Flames for a third-round pick in 2020. The see-saw of where Gustafsson would be shipped off to has been going back and forth since he was scratched for asset management purposes.
Stan Bowman did the right thing in moving on from Gustafsson who has been such a confusing player during his Blackhawks tenure.
At times looking like one of the best offensive defensemen in the NHL and at other times, most of the time in his own end, just completely lost on the ice.
With players like Adam Boqvist and Ian Mitchell on the doorstep of being NHL regulars, it only made sense to move on from Gustafsson as an asset as they had no plans of resigning him this offseason when he will be an unrestricted free agent. While Gustafsson had higher value this past offseason coming off of a 60 point season, Bowman rolled the dice on him and lost.
They were still able to recoup some assets for Gustafsson with them currently sitting 8 points outside of a playoff spot and likely to miss the playoffs for a third straight season. While it isn’t a perfect situation, the Blackhawks were still able to acquire a draft asset in what looks to be an incredibly deep draft.
This also signals that we will get a chance to get a better look at Lucas Carlsson who had a solid debut Sunday afternoon in Dallas. Carlsson has had a solid season in Rockford and will utilize this opportunity to compete for a place in the line up for 2020 and beyond.
Again while the return for Gustafsson was not as strong as we all hoped, they were able to finally move on from a deeply flawed defenseman and add an asset in a strong draft. Now with his subtraction, we can focus on the future offensive defensemen in the pipeline.