3 former Blackhawks who Kyle Davidson should not bring back for 2024-25

The Chicago Blackhawks could bring back a few players from the late 2010s or early 2020s, but not everyone should make the shortlist.
Apr 4, 2023; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Calgary Flames defenseman Nikita Zadorov (16) checks the puck
Apr 4, 2023; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Calgary Flames defenseman Nikita Zadorov (16) checks the puck / Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
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The Chicago Blackhawks will see quite a few familiar names hit the market when NHL free agency kicks off, and a few of those faces will be players who provided them plenty of value in the past. But that doesn’t mean they need to use what is among the most lucrative cap space in the NHL to bring them in, or at least not for this season. 

Yes, two of the players listed are still more than serviceable, and if general manager Kyle Davidson brought them to town, most fans would be satisfied with that. The third name on the list struggled through a down year, but they still enjoyed a good run during their time with the Blackhawks. 

Patrick Kane, F

Yeah, we would all like to see Patrick Kane team up for at least one season with Connor Bedard, and yes, it would be epic, even if the former isn’t the player he once was. Well, actually, he looked pretty close to the Patrick Kane of Old during what has so far been his lone season with the Detroit Red Wings. 

He will likely return to the Motor City and sign a new deal at some point before July 1st, but even if he didn’t, it’s still too early to bring back Kane. It could, and should, happen at some point, but not while Kane is seeking another Cup at the moment, and the Blackhawks are still nowhere near even wild card contention. 

Instead, Kyle Davidson must build the Blackhawks into a relevant group first, and that will take a few seasons. Once the Hawks are nearing what they once were during the heart of the Kane era, then go back out and sign Kane to a one-year deal, where he can finish his career where it started and lasted for over a decade-and-a-half. 

Overall, Kane returning to the Windy City should be a matter of when, not if, but it should also be timed correctly.