The Chicago Blackhawks Should Save Their Cap Space
By Jeremiah Lee
For the first time in more than a decade, the Chicago Blackhawks are not capped out. According to CapFriendly, they have $5,213,687 in current cap space. Should they use it? No.
The Chicago Blackhawks currently have cap flexibility to start the season for the first time in a while. Should they use their newfound cap space?
In my opinion, no. They should not. Unless Stan Bowman fleeces a team and takes a bad contract in a package that involves a high-quality, proven prospect like Teuvo Teravainen was for the ‘Hawks when he helped them win a Stanley Cup in 2015, they should not make any moves.
If Stan somehow pulls off such a deal, he could buy out the player on the bad contract next season or place him on waivers and keep the prospect for the rebuild.
Realistically speaking, the Chicago Blackhawks probably won’t make such a move and have a quiet offseason. With Adam Boqvist and Kirby Dach already in the lineup, Ian Mitchell potentially coming in next season, and Lukas Reichel in a year or two, the Chicago Blackhawks have to be smart and save money to sign these kids when their entry-level contract is up.
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Not to mention we could find some potential unexpected gems (like Alex DeBrincat in 2017) in this rebuilding phase which we will have to re-sign. Not to mention Pius Suter is on a one-year deal and could put up a great year points-wise right off the bat like Dominik Kubalik did this year. He is a RFA at the end of the season and will need another contract as well.
If the ‘Hawks get a lottery pick this season and draft first overall, they could draft Owen Power (currently listed at 6’5″, 214 lbs) who some say has all the skills for a franchise defenseman and is currently playing minutes in all situations at 18 years of age at the University of Michigan.
If this kid is what some scouts and analysts believe he is, then he could command a hefty price when his entry-level deal is up. Even if the ‘Hawks do not draft in the top three, they are currently slotted to pick number 8 (as they were supposed to this last draft) and there are multiple high-quality prospects there as well.
As a rebuilder, they need to give roster spots to promising prospects and save their money for their next generation of stars in the Kirby Dach Era of Chicago Blackhawks hockey.
The Blackhawks should be giving the prospects a chance to prove themselves and not take on players who are on bad deals. The only player we should use the cap space on is potentially Dylan Strome (around 1 yr, 2.5 mil) though I don’t think 3rd line center is the right position for him.
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After that, they should not take on any more contracts. Having cap space is a great luxury for a hockey team, but, again, unless a deal involves a proven prospect like Teuvo Teravainen was for the Blackhawks, they should be patient and save up for the next generation.