Former Chicago Blackhawks’ Winger Drake Caggiula Remains Unsigned
By Jimmy Lynch
Former Chicago Blackhawks’ winger, Drake Caggiula, remains contractless with almost a month approaching on a new season.
The NHL free agency market still has a lot of names on the board, even a few former Blackhawks. Due to the horrible salary cap situation many teams find themselves in this season, players like Drake Caggiula remain without a contract.
Caggiula suffered an injury last season with the Blackhawks, an injury that caused him to miss a considerable amount of time last year. Caggiula only played in 40 games last season, but he put up 81 hits and nine goals during that time.
Caggiula could provide some great depth to whatever team he joins next season. While his time in Chicago is done, he is still a rather reliable player. Teams are buzzing around the NHL on the prospect of adding a player like Caggiula potentially.
There are teams out there looking for a player like Caggiula. The Edmonton Oilers traded Caggiula to Chicago a few years ago, and the case could be made for them to bring him back, and the San Jose Sharks need a few more pieces added to their lineup. Caggiula is a highly effective bottom-six forward, one that can even play on the top line when a spark is needed, but he was going to ask for a pay raise.
Caggiula made 1.5 million the past two years thanks to a contract he signed with Edmonton back in July of 2018. His pay would increase, and Chicago did not want to commit to Caggiula even if it was just two or three million a year.
Caggiula is a very effective physical player when he is healthy, but he has crossed the line in the past. He was suspended a game during the qualifying round due to a hit he dished out on Tyler Ennis in game one.
Chicago will need to see all of their players start playing a more physical brand of hockey next season if they want to compete. They do not have a deep enough lineup to play any other style of hockey.
While losing Drake Caggiula definitely hurts Chicago’s physical side, they did add players like Nikita Zadorov and Mattias Janmark, both of whom can throw around their bodies on the ice. Where do you think Caggiula will land this offseason?