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Blackhawks: Simulating Five Years in the Future Using NHL 21

Chicago Blackhawks Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Chicago Blackhawks Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Alex DeBrincat, Chicago Blackhawks
Alex DeBrincat, Chicago Blackhawks (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

2024-25 Season – (Year 5)

Offseason moves to begin the year:

Going into the re-sign phase during the offseason there were a number of players available in Chicago, and only 4.5 million in cap space to get them re-signed. Chicago let Nichushkin, Johns, Murphy, and Quenneville walk during the offseason due to not enough cap space to keep them around.

All of those players were big pieces in the Blackhawks depth the past few seasons of the simulation, and replacing them was not going to be easy.

The Blackhawks added one free agent during the offseason Lawson Crouse was signed for 1.3 million for one year at the age of 27. Crouse has size at 6’4″ that could be beneficial in the bottom six for the team.

Regular Season Record: 47-32-3
Playoff Finish: Stanley Cup Final
Stanley Cup Champion: Philadephia Flyers
Award Winners: None For Blackhawks
Point Leaders: Goals (DeBrincat 30) Assists (Strome 45) Points (Strome 71)

Notes:

The Blackhawks had a losing record going into January and were out of the playoff picture at that time. However, they managed to end the year as the final Wild Card Team with seven points above the closest team in the wild card race.

The trade deadline was critical for the Blackhawks as they were not in a playoff spot at that time. Chicago chose to bring Evander Kane to the team as well as a young defenseman in Jaylin Doyle. The moves made the Blackhawks better and helped push the team into the playoffs with 97 points.

Even though Patrick Kane had finally started to regress in his play he still put up 52 points including 22 goals. Kane continued to stay productive well into his 30s, except I do not think his next contract should be for more than two or three years. Let the Blackhawks rework that every offseason.

An injury to Teravainan causes him to miss time at the end of the season, which was not good for the team in order to compete in the playoffs. Teuvo came back in game five for the Blackhawks as they found themselves down 3-1 in the series against Colorado in round one. He helped them come back to win the series in seven games.

The Blackhawks went to the Stanley Cup Final in back to back seasons and yet fell short of the Stanley Cup once again. While that is sad to see, this team did have some pretty competitive hockey throughout their run.

Key Trades:

Chicago traded Kubalik, Wilson, and a first-round draft pick to San Jose for Evander Kane and Jaylin Doyle

Notable Contracts:

Dylan Strome signed for five years at 9.425 million

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