Blackhawks: Is Brandon Saad on his way out sooner rather than later?
By Jimmy Lynch
I think that we can all agree that Brandon Saad is a big part of the Chicago Blackhawks. Saad has been there for the Blackhawks when they needed him the most countless times in the past, however, he might be running out of time to play in front of the Chicago fans in the United Center.
At the end of this season, Brandon Saad will be on the final year of his current six million dollar contract. He is a great piece any team competing for the Stanley Cup would be lucky to have. This past season has shown not only how good Saad can be, but also how frustrating it must be for him to play as a third or fourth liner.
Saad is a top-six forward, however, he finds himself to be expendable thanks to Jeremy Colliton. Colliton has favored other wingers like Dominik Kubalik, and Alex DeBrincat in place of Saad sometimes in the past. Plus when you consider that Saad, Kubalik, and DeBrincat all play the same position, it looks even less likely that all three will be back next year.
If the Blackhawks are not planning on re-signing Saad at the end of the 2020-21 season, then I think the Blackhawks are going to opt to move him either this offseason or at next years trade deadline. Saad could be worth something to this team when it comes to bringing in younger prospects and draft picks. Plus he does not have a no-movement clause to stop the team from dealing him away unlike some of the other players.
The Blackhawks have some depth at wing, and they might end up using it to their advantage when it comes to getting rid of a winger. I love Saad and think he is a great piece on this team, however even I have to admit he is expendable.
The Blackhawks are up against the salary cap this offseason, and the 2021 offseason does offer a little bit of relief. Outside of Saad not many big-name players will be coming off of the roster, unless the team finds a way to get a one-year bridge contract with Dylan Strome and or Dominik Kubalik, in the hopes that the money currently with Brandon Saad could go to him in 2021 onward.
What do you think? Would you like to see the Blackhawks trade away Saad before or after the start of next season? Dealing Saad would show the direction the Blackhawks are going, and it would help us forget about the Panarin trade!