Could the Chicago Blackhawks provide Patrik Laine with a fresh start?

Columbus is working to trade the former second overall pick
Columbus Blue Jackets v Carolina Hurricanes
Columbus Blue Jackets v Carolina Hurricanes / Jaylynn Nash/GettyImages
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Could Laine be a fit?

If the Blackhawks are looking at acquiring Patrik Laine, the reaction from fans will likely be torn.

Laine is 26 years old and has two years left on his contract at $8.7 million per season. His talent, when healthy, is that of a high-end goal scorer whose one-timer is a threat on the powerplay. Standing at 6 foot 5 inches and 216 points, Laine brings size and natural goal scoring that is lacking in the Blackhawks lineup.

His consistency began to fluctuate more during the tail-end of his time in Winnipeg, but was able to round out his offensive game more in Columbus under Brad Larsen.

Laine's biggest flaw is his defensive game, which was discussed more heavily during his time in Columbus. His short stint at the center position showed that his defensive instincts and footspeed were not on par with that of a top-flight center. If a team wants the best version of Laine, he will play as a scoring winger.

Speed has never been the selling point of Laine's game, as is the case with many players his size. He does, however, have the hands to trick defenders and a lethal shot to compliment that. His skill level and offensive talent bordering on an elite level which make him an interesting addition if he can stay in the lineup.

The Blackhawks have a lot of young, playmaking, forward with a lot of speed which could work well with Laine as it gives him more opportunities to use his best asset, his shot.