On Monday morning, the Blackhawks surprised most of their fans and many members of the media when they demoted top prospect Jeremy Morin to Rockford of the AHL. In light of the injury issues the Hawks have been dealing with, especially with Patrick Kane being lost for “a bit” according to coach Joel Quenneville on Sunday night, Morin would figure to have his ice time more assured now than ever.
That still appears to be the case.
Adam Jahns of the Sun-Times is reporting late Monday night that Morin was demoted in a financial move, nothing more. Similar to the limo service employed by the Blackhawks front office with players like Jake Dowell and Bryan Bickell last year, the Hawks have demoted Morin simply to soften the cap hit of having him on the NHL roster.
According to Jahns, the move also has nothing to do with Morin and the Blackhawks’ other top prospect, defenseman Nick Leddy, being invited to play for Team USA at the World Junior Championships in Buffalo.
Leddy began the regular season in Chicago and might not be far away from a return, and has been an outstanding prospect just one year out of high school in Minnesota. He played at the University of Minnesota last year before blowing away Hawks brass at the team’s summer prospect camp, after which he was given an entry level contract.