1. The Blackhawks bring in two legends- July 1957
I must admit, this choice was tough. I was going back and forth between this trade and the 1990 trade that swapped Chris Chelios for Denis Savard. This move undoubtedly ranks as one of the best in team history.
However, I believe that when you look at the raw talent that the ‘Hawks acquired from Detroit, this trade just edges out as the best. The team did give up some good players, however, just look at what the team got in return.
Ted Lindsay was starting to age by 1957, but was still a great player with three Stanley Cups to his name. This trade happened after the Red Wings were angered by Lindsay’s forming of a players’ union, so the ‘Hawks were more than happy to take him off their hands. While he wasn’t the superstar he was in Detroit, he still put up 123 points in three years with the ‘Hawks.
The highlight of this trade, though, was clearly the acquisition of goaltender Glenn Hall. ‘Mr. Goalie’ would end up playing ten years for Chicago, winning two Vezina Trophies and a Stanley Cup en route to 407 wins. Additionally, he was selected as an All-Star seven times as a Blackhawk, and helped to modernize goaltending into what it is today.
Glenn Hall is one of the best goalies the ‘Hawks have ever had. Some people would probably argue that he was the best. His number now hangs in the United Center rafters alongside another great goalie, Tony Esposito.
This trade ended up bringing two big pieces to Chicago: a championship-caliber veteran and a young goalie that would turn into a legend. That is why, in my opinion, this transaction ranks as the best trade-in Blackhawks history.