One pending free agent the Blackhawks can steal from their Central Division rivals this summer

The Chicago Blackhawks shouldn’t be too active in free agency this summer, but there is talent from the Central Division they can sign if they’re willing.

St Louis Blues v Chicago Blackhawks
St Louis Blues v Chicago Blackhawks / Michael Reaves/GettyImages
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Alex Goligoski, Defenseman/Minnesota Wild

There weren’t many valuable names heading into unrestricted free agency in Minnesota, but Alex Goligoski, despite his age, factors in as a good, cost-effective fit. He wouldn’t be in Chicago any longer than one year, but the leadership he would provide to a rebuilding club going into what would be his 18th season makes him worth considering. 

Goligoski has spent time with four different clubs, each at varying stages of building, and he even won a Stanley Cup with the Pittsburgh Penguins during his early days in the league. He’s seen rebuilds during his time with the Arizona Coyotes, and recently, he’s been helping the Wild try to return to the playoffs, even if things look bleak at this point. 

At this stage in his career, Goligoski would fill the bottom pairing and keep the Blackhawks overall level of physicality up. Should Kyle Davidson surprise us and bring in one of the NHL’s longest-tenured players, don’t expect him to fill the stat sheet with points. But even as recently as 2022-23, he’s still been a proven puck mover at 5-on-5, and he can also quarterback power plays when needed. 

The odds of him coming to Chicago would be beyond slim, but leadership, the ability to play in all three zones, and added depth at a low price would make it worth bringing him in.