Blackhawks: Corey Crawford could be done after 2020 in Chicago

Corey Crawford #50, Chicago Blackhawks (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Corey Crawford #50, Chicago Blackhawks (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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Corey Crawford, Chicago Blackhawks
Corey Crawford #50, Chicago Blackhawks (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

Call me a pessimist if you want, but there’s a good chance Corey Crawford isn’t coming back next year to the Chicago Blackhawks.

It probably has nothing to do with the Chicago Blackhawks, conflicts with Bowman, or really anything about the organization. Instead, I think next year’s cap is going to put a lot of teams, Chicago included, in a tough spot. As a result, Crawford may very well end up being too expensive for Chicago.

This sounds a bit like a doom and gloom proposition, I know.

I think that unless the hail mary that will be this year’s postseason is an out and out financial success, the cap could very well go down next year.

Great for them, but it might hurt Chicago. They may be forced to find a cheaper option in the goal. For a team that is looking to improve, limiting free agency acquisitions may hamper Chicago’s future progress.

Whenever the current season ends, Crowford will be an unrestricted free agent. How much would it cost to keep him? No one knows, but if Cam Ward had the three million CapFriendly has listed for him you’d have to imagine that Crawford would likely cost a bit more.

They’re about the same age and both cup-winning goalies, but Crowford’s numbers are better.

So, who could Chicago sign as an alternative that might be cheaper, but just as good?

I’m not sure there is an obvious answer to this.

Maybe, Crowford would take a slightly smaller deal to keep playing in Chicago. This is plausible, but only if another team doesn’t come along and offer him a ton of money. He showed this year that he’s still a great goalie, and could be a great option for a team looking to spend and compete for a Cup.

But, who might be out there that could potentially be signed as a starter for less money than Crawford?