Cleaning Up After The Furor

Now that the siege of July 1 is over and the Hawks have picked their lot, we’re left to sit and wait out the rest of the summer as the Hawks bleed out the rest of the moves they’re going to make. So just want to clean up some thoughts as we begin to hit down time.

-The Hawks only made one move, signing Viktor Tikhonov, which is interesting if nothing else. He has first round pedigree, and was somewhat unlucky to be promoted to the NHL too soon and under coach Gretzky, which you’ll remember was not a very pleasant experience for anyone. That clearly stunted his development. I don’t know that his numbers in the K make anyone spit out their drink, and he may just end up Rockford depth. But it’s clear the Hawks are going to give themselves plenty of options on the wings.

The only wings for sure on next year’s roster are whichever of Teuvo or Dano isn’t used as a center, Kane, Hossa, Panarin and Shaw. Any or all of Sharp, Bickell, and Versteeg could be gone. And Danault (also could be a center), McNeill, Morin, Tropp, Tikhonov, Hartman and maybe one or two more are going to scrap for what could be as many as three spots open or as little as one, depending on who’s traded. Someone’s going to earn it, that’s for sure.

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NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Nashville Predators at Chicago Blackhawks

The Fallout

It’s rare that the Hawks do something so large that we need a full day to clear out all the feelings and stories from it. But here we are with Brandon Saad’s trade to Columbus.

A day later, I think it tells us a lot when Stan Bowman comes out and says that they weren’t even close in negotiations. Because look at Bowman’s record on this sort of thing: Kruger (possibly twice), Hjalmarsson, Oduya, and even Sharp and Seabrook for what they are have all signed deals probably below market value to stay in Chicago (you could argue Kane and Toews as well, if you really want). When Stan wants to get this done, if it’s in any way possible it almost always gets done. When he tells you they were miles apart, they were probably miles apart.

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NHL: Chicago Blackhawks at San Jose Sharks

So That Happened

Ok, this won’t be too hard to try and get our arms around, will it?

Let’s all breathe. It’s not too hard to figure out what went down here. We said just a few weeks ago that hometown discounts are generally things agents and unions frown upon. Secondly, this is a weird kind of negotiation, where the Hawks wanted a bridge deal and Saad’s camp wanted long-term big paper. The problem with that is there really isn’t any middle ground. You can’t sign a four-year bridge deal. You don’t get much relief by paying Saad over $5.5 million for two years. It’ s kind of one or the other. The Hawks had an idea of what they wanted to do. It’s obvious Saad’s camp had quite another.

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