With the trade deadline just three weeks away, the Chicago Blackhawks will be buyers, obviously. The real question is, what are they looking for? Rumors have been floating around about them being in the market for a top 6 forward. If we look at the forward lines, the second line has been steady all year with Panarin, Anisimov, and Kane. The first line has been either Shaw or Teravainen, Toews, and Hossa. There’s no doubt that the second line will stay together as Kane is having a career year, Panarin having an amazing rookie season, and Anisimov doing all of the dirty work for them. The real question lies on the first line left wing spot, who will be there at the start of the playoffs.
Taking a look back to last year, Stan Bowman made a move near the deadline to acquire Antoine Vermette from the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for a First Round Draft pick and Klas Dahlback. That is a heavy price to pay for a rental, but was it worth it? Looking back, he was worth the price. Vermette played crucial Penalty kill minutes and scored three game winning goals in the final two rounds of the playoffs. He provide the depth scoring that teams are always looking for. Also off the ice the players seemed to love his attitude, therefore brining a more positive environment to a locker room that had its questions marks for most of last year.
So lets fast forward to this year and see if something similar could unfold. As of February 8th the Hawks are 5 points clear of Dallas in the Western Confrence, coming off a huge 5-1 win against the Stars on Febuary 6th. The Hawks have been one of the best teams as of late but they could still use a top 6 forward as I stated above. I don’t know if Coach Q is entirely sold on either Teuvo Teravainen or Andrew Shaw to occupy the first line left wing come playoff time. With that being said, who could possibly fill that role as the first line left winger. There are plenty of names that are out there, but I decided to choose a few of them that caught my eye. The following players are all unrestricted free agents for this upcoming summer:
- Andrew Laad (Winnipeg Jets)
- Teddy Purcell (Edmonton Oilers)
- Jiri Hudler (Calgary Flames)
- Mikkel Boedker (Arizona Coyotes)
Could any of these players be in a Hawks sweater by March? If the team can retain some salary, it could be a real possibility, as the Hawks have a good prospect pool. Only time will tell, but if any of these players were to come to the Hawks, it would greatly improve the depth of this team, therefore giving them a much better chance of repeating as champions. It will be interesting to see what kind of moves, if any, are made with the trade deadline only three weeks away. If you have heard any rumors, or have any comments on what you think the Hawks could possibly be in line for, please leave them down below. Thank you!