Blackhawks: Could Corey Crawford End Up In Montreal?
By Ryan Fedrau
If the Chicago Blackhawks don’t re-sign Corey Crawford, could he end up playing for his home town Montreal Canadiens?
Look, the Chicago Blackhawks will be moving on from Corey Crawford in the near future. Whether it’s this upcoming year, two years from now, or even three, Crawford won’t be the Hawks goalie forever.
Crawford is coming off of back-to-back years with a losing record in the regular season, holding a 30-38-8 record during the past two years. He still has maintained a .913 save percentage. All of the losses aren’t on Crawford, the team has struggled in front of him at times. The Hawks defensive play has been terrible for the last few seasons.
Does that become a factor in the decision to re-sign Crawford or not? It should be considered. It’s hard to discount the work he’s done, even with the team struggling in front of him during the past two seasons. He’s also slowed down a tad, which makes me wonder, how long can he play at a high level?
Signing Crawford to anything longer than a 2-year deal is a mistake by Stan Bowman. Letting him walk also could be a mistake, as it’ll leave the Hawks with no goalie. They’re in a really tough spot. The Salary Cap isn’t in Chicago’s favor, neither is the goalie market. The top goalies, if they hit the market, will be paid more money than Chicago can afford. They might have to hold off a year, sign Crawford, and wait until the 2021 Free Agency to sign a new goalie.
So, let’s say Crawford leaves the team. The big spot that has been rumored is Montreal. The Canadiens need a solid backup goalie, and what a tandem would Carey Price and Corey Crawford be! The Canadiens are paying Price $10,500,000 per season. They’re going to struggle to find a goalie. Would Crawford take a hometown discount for his home team? Maybe.
The Canadiens are close to being a good team again. Two solid goalies in net would help fast forward that. Crawford going to Montreal benefits him but hurts the Hawks. It’s smart to re-sign Crawford and avoid the nightmare situation where Chicago is left without a goalie in Free Agency.