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Does Kevin Fiala make sense as a trade target for the Blackhawks?

Pierce Stephenson
Kevin Fiala, Minnesota Wild
Kevin Fiala, Minnesota Wild / Steph Chambers/GettyImages
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Now, if I were Bill Guerin and Minnesota Wild front office, I wouldn't trade Kevin Fiala. Nor is there any outlets saying he's being actively shopped, though Fiala has been included on TSN's most recent trade bait board, and being brought up on the 32 thoughts podcast on whether or not he could be traded. Either way, I think Kyle Davidson should be looking at acquiring the Swiss winger for the Blackhawks. So, why might Fiala be available? First, let's look at it from Minnesota's perspective.

As of December 13, the Wild lead the western conference with points and points percentage. They've received elite production from Kirill Kaprizov and great depth goal scoring. Kevin Fiala isn't among that. Fiala has just 4 goals in 28 games with a 4.4 shooting percentage alongside 14 assists, so he should be due for some goals eventually. The big thing is, Kevin Fiala is a RFA this offseason with arbitration rights. Does Minnesota want to commit long- term with him? Especially with the buyout money they have to pay to Zach Parise and Ryan Suter? Let's go to Chicago's perspective.

The Blackhawks are the opposite of the Wild and have zero depth goal scoring outside of DeBrincat, Kane, and Hagel. As mentioned before, Kevin Fiala only has 4 goals, but should be due for some positive regression, and also has a history of high-end production. Even after slow starts in 2019-20 and 2020-21, Fiala has put up 94 points in 114 games, which is an average of 67 points a season. He's also done a great job of driving play this season, putting up a 54.95% corsi, 52.55% fenwick, 55.76% xG, and 58.33% HDCF. All of that would be welcomed in Chicago.

In terms of assets the Blackhawks would have to give up for Fiala, you'd probably have to give up a current roster player. Dylan Strome has been continually brought up in rumors, so it's a wonder if he'd be apart of that. They'd also have to give up another valuable piece, perhaps maybe a Nicolas Beaudin? Beaudin has struggled this year in the AHL and while Chicago is lacking young future talent, it might be a sacrifice you have to make to acquire a proven talent with Kevin Fiala, who is 25 years old.

Obviously, the Blackhawks would have to give Fiala a long-term contract. But looking at their salary cap for next year, they'll have 24 million dollars free to sign him. Noteworthy RFAs and UFAs include Dominik Kubalik, Dylan Strome, and Kirby Dach. None of them will command much. The former two may even be traded and not be on the team next season. As for the contract they'll have to pay him, maybe 7-8 million dollars for 8 years?

All in all, trading for Kevin Fiala could be a huge positive for Chicago. He has great offensive abilities, and while you might have to give up a bit to get him, this could beneficial long-term for the Blackhawks. Especially when you really need high-end talent in your organization.

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