Blackhawks: Is $3.5M Too Much For Corey Crawford?

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

Corey Crawford was offered $3,500,000 AAV to return as the Chicago Blackhawks goalie in 2021. Is that too much money for the 35-year-old?

After a solid performance in the playoffs for the Chicago Blackhawks, Corey Crawford was rewarded with a reported one-year deal worth $3,500,000 AAV. No contract has been signed yet and there wasn’t a public statement made by the team, these rumors were started by sources close to the team.

Assuming this is true, as it’s been reported by many outlets, is the contract a fair price for both parties? Is Corey Crawford still worth that kind of money at 35-years-old? Well, he did have a solid playoff performance. Crawford showed that he still has a year or two left in the tank. The question is, what level of performance can Crawford maintain during an entire season?

It’s no secret that Crawford wants to be a starting goalie. He came out and said it, along with saying he plays better when he has more games in a row, unlike last season when Robin Lehner took half of the starts.

With a 16-20-3 record last season with a 2.77 GAA, you can’t fault every loss on Crawford. There were some games last season where he kept the team in games when they had no business being there. That being said, there were a few games that Crawford didn’t play well enough for the team to win.

During the last two seasons, Crawford has a 30-38-8 record, with a 2.85 GAA, saving 91.3% of the shots he’s faced. Those numbers aren’t terrible, but it’s still a losing record.

An aging goalie who hasn’t gotten better with time, like Crawford, is overpaid with this contract offer. A fair market price for Crawford could be just around $3,000,000. The fact that Stan Bowman is offering a reported $3,500,000 doesn’t help their salary cap problems. They could put that money towards a younger goalie in free agency.

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In my opinion, Crawford taking a hometown discount meant he’d be paid $2,500,000 AAV – $3,000,000 AAV, along with him being a 50/50 starter. If the Hawks keep Crawford, it has to be at a lower price. Crawford can win games still, but he won’t be the same goalie he was last season. Age hasn’t been too kind to him, and with his injury history, signing Crawford to a one-year deal with $3,500,000 is too much of a risk.