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Defensive Partners for Seth Jones in the future

Pierce Stephenson
Hampus Lindholm
Hampus Lindholm / Minas Panagiotakis/GettyImages
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Seth Jones will be a Chicago Blackhawk until 2030. Despite the massive overpayment in terms of trade assets and money to get him, Jones has been the number one defenseman the Blackhawks have needed these past few seasons. While he hasn't been completely perfect, he's been solid most of 2021-22, eating big minutes.

Seth Jones played his best hockey with Zach Werenski in Columbus. Chicago certainly doesn't have a Werenski-type defenseman right now, or even coming through the system, but does Jones need an elite level partner to succeed?

Seth Jones' most common defensive partner this season has been Calvin de Haan, certainly not a top pairing d-man. The two have formed a decent pairing with respectable numbers, especially since Derek King took over as head coach. Since November 7, in 356:52 of 5v5 ice time, the duo have a 50.25 corsi%, a 51.11 xG%, and a 54.84 HDCF%.

It's highly unlikely Calvin de Haan will be a Blackhawk after March 21, so who will be the Robin to Seth Jones' Batman? It could be Jake McCabe, but in 179:22 of 5v5 ice time across the whole season, all of their advanced numbers are sub 48%. It could be in their own backyard as there's a plethora of left handed defensive shots such as Isaak Phillips, Wyatt Kaiser, and Nolan Allan, to name a few.

They could explore the trade market as well. Victor Mete just requested a trade from Ottawa, so maybe Kyle Davidson could get him for relatively cheap in a trade. Before this season, Mete was someone who thrived in a limited defensive role, though it's a wonder if he'd perform the same in bigger minutes, potentially with Seth Jones. The 23 year old rearguard is an RFA this offseason with arbitration rights, but it's likely he won't command too much money.

They could even wait until July 13 for free agency. Unless he signs a contract extension with Anaheim, or even another team if he moves at the trade deadline, Hampus Lindholm could be a perfect partner for Seth Jones. While Lindholm has had a bit of down year, he's been one of the most underrated defensemen in the NHL over the past few seasons. Though I'm not sure Kyle Davidson would want to give more money and term to a 28 year old defenseman, the front office would have to do their due diligence if the Swede made it to the open market.

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