Who Needs Job Security?

“Nothing lasts forever.”

That’s the headline-grabbing quote from Blackhawks’ owner Rocky Wirtz in an article at Crain’s Chicago Business on Monday.

Wirtz went on to speak about the 2017-18 season. Here are a few of the more powerful quotes:

“The better players all had off years,” Wirtz said. Star goalie Corey Crawford was out much of the season with injuries. “There were lots of reasons.”

“I don’t find [the salary cap] as a problem. You can work it, as long as you have a system… If you’re a fan, it’s a problem. If you’re an owner, it’s not,”

“I think the team will be fine.” But, “if things are off at the beginning of the year, that’s a different story… Nothing lasts forever.”

Finally, the article notes that season ticket renewals for the Blackhawks came back at “only” 85 percent this year, a stunning decline from the 99-100 percent the team had seen for most of the last decade.

Read the full Crain’s piece here.

73 thoughts on “Who Needs Job Security?

  1. In 2015, TBL actually outplayed us for long stretches in the SCF. They just didn’t know how to close the deal whereas we did. From then until CC got hurt last year, we still got a lot of points but to me if felt like we were definitely declining. Last year, after CC’s injury and without 4, 72, and 81, we capsized pretty quickly. I doubt Rocky saw that coming and I doubt he had anything of a plan in place to make management changes, so even if he wanted to it would have been hard to fire Stan (and whoever else) at the end of last year. I bet he has one now though.

  2. Don’t have a say a damn thing that I haven’t said before just happy that Rocky did! Go Hawks and way to go Rocky!

  3. I thought Wirtz’s most revealing answer came when I asked him if he had any regrets giving long-term contracts to Toews, Kane and Duncan Keith, all of whom have deals not set to expire until the 2022-23 season.

    “No,” he said. “It was the right thing to do.”

    But, he immediately added, “Now they have to earn it.”

  4. Good read Tab, a successful businessman for obvious reasons. He pretty much said it your best players gave to be your best players fir good things to happen.

  5. Like the whole interview he gave. Looking forward to next few weeks. Some roster decisions, draft and free angency. Will be interesting in what they do. Hopefully they don’t panic and hand out some dumb contracts.

  6. Good comment JordyHawk, I saw the same thing that series with TB. We very narrowly won that series on the backs of our superstars, Keith and Crow particularly in that Final series. But TB had us on the ropes at times and down 2-1 in games I believe.

    But the team overall has been in decline ever since, when you consider 2 first round exits, one in 7 games, then getting swept, and then not sniffing the playoffs.

    That is a mighty steep 3 year decline. Moving vets out just to move out vets and play random young guys won’t help either. We need to get top shelf young talent, and that is really hard to do from the middle of the draft board, which is where we would have been if Crow was healthy.

    It is like the team needs to decide if they want to try to maximize the talent they have (which I fully expect for at least a year) or go into a more aggressive rebuild mode, like the Rangers did when they moved all those vets at the deadline, which I think is inevitable with this team, it is just a question of how long you want to string this out and wait before making that decision.

  7. Trade for Justin Faulk and sign
    Calvin de Haan and you have a much better defense:

    Keith – Faulk
    de Haan – Seabrook
    Forsling – Murphy
    Gustafsson – Rutta

    Out or in AHL (Oesterle)

    Crawford
    Lehtonen (UFA) OR a good backup

    Back to playoffs for sure

  8. I saw the Justin Faulk rumor. All I will say is consider the source. Jaekel is far from reliable. If the Canes want the 27 plus a few prospects I’m all for it. I’m not sure there are a lot of difference makers in RFD anyways. Even Edsjell and Joker are only marginal prospects in my opinion anyways. Most people outside the Org see Henri as a limited D prospect.

  9. This Wirtz interview is very telling. I posted it on the other thread and I’ll say it here. He seems irritated that as a boss, he’s paying an employee(Corey Crawford), $6 Million per year for uncertainty.

  10. And Kempny scores…and more egg on Q’s face. Sorry, but it’s an indictment of his ugly stubborn side.

  11. Anyone else see a Rumor that the Hawks we’re seriously going to pursue Tavares?
    And I have also read the Hawks are interested in Hannifin as opposed to Faulk?
    And Edjsell? Give this kid a year in Rockford, add 15-20lbs of muscle and the Hawks will have a faster, more skilled Anisimov.
    Joker? Ian Mitchell is being compared to Duncan Keith. His linemate Hellman looked like he belonged ? Forsling should improve. Gustafson looked like he has done Chemistry with 88.
    Sikura looks like he belongs.
    I have always been impressed with Hayden
    If the Hawks can somehow dump Srabrooks RIDICULOUS contract..
    Anyway? This summer will be interesting at the draft and on 7/1

  12. Great posts by Jordyhawk and Hereismike. I completely agree that the Hawks barely beat TB and have been declining since. Don’t forget Kane’s game six. Set up Keith for the first goal and one-timed the second one.

    The Hawks have so many needs. Continue the partial rebuild and no new big contracts. I just can’t see them making the playoffs. If Crow comes back, do not expect the same consistently amazing level of play he has demonstrated in the past.

  13. The Tampa series, yes they are a good team in 2015 but they were good this year as well and still went down. Also Pittsburgh barely beat Ottawa and Nashville last year but yet they still WON. Good teams find a way to WIN!

  14. As far as firing of coaches and GM’s if Rocky wanted Q or Bowman gone he and McD should have done it and not procrastinate. Toronto Raptors finished first this year in the East and Casey was coach of the year but got fired as they saw they needed a new approach (even though it’s not Casey fault that any team Lebron is on is going to win)

  15. Bomba: Kempny’s goal is the cherry on top. Doesn’t really matter. What does matter is that for 3 1/2 series now, Kempny has hardly been noticed. What this means is he is doing his job quite well.

    As for Q, you are spot on. Someone mentioned on TV or publication that this will be 3 Cups in a row Q assisted the winning team adding a D-man that Q never ever gave a chance to. Q isn’t stupid, he knows how to coach and particularly handle D-men. This goes way beyond that. Shaking my head….

    Lastly, for him to essentially select Oesterle over Kempny to give free run to play consistently (not only play but top 2/4 minutes) last season is egregious. Wirtz isn’t stupid either, these questions need to be addressed in-house. And will the Chicago media finally put their big boy pants on and directly address the Kempny issue w/ Q? I would like to hear his testimony as to what he thought was wrong w/ Kempny’s game, and secondly, why didn’t he give him a chance to play regularly last year and this past year? Did he let Bowman know after the first season he didn’t think much of Kempny’s game, so don’t re-sign him?

  16. It appears Q doesn’t accommodate defensemen either play his system or don’t play. If anybody expects him to adjust to the player, it’s not happening. The player adjusts or as we have seen they are gone and he has the record to stand by it, as frustrating at times as it may be for fans.

  17. In regards to Q and Kempny, Q is a “made man” his resume speaks for itself. He is the coach and it’s his way or the highway. All Kempny success proves is the Stan ID a serviceable NHL dman that a championship team can win with. For whatever reason it was NEVER going to work here which was ashame. In hindsight it looks bad. I thought it looked bad at the time. Prior to the season starting Kempny was one of my keys to the season along with Anton Forsberg. Let’s hope the Org makes the right moves on draft day. Personally I hope it’s a Dman. Wither it’s a guy ready next season or in 2 years the Hawks need help back there and I’m not sold on any of the guys they currently have Joker or Mitchell included.

  18. Ian- great post at 9:12 am… agreed

    Q- has the resume… and you do need player’s to be on same page…

    BUT- a lot of people here (me included) saw Kempny as top 4 (at least on the Hawks team last year)… and wish – he was given a better/bigger chance to “fail/learn” – Q’s systems

  19. If there is anything to Justin Faulk rumor, he would fit with only 2 yrs remaining on contract and not be an issue with resigning youngsters and contract expiration would be when probable expansion draft happens and not require protected if an ufa.

  20. The Kempny situation is beyond frustrating. Somehow Q’s doghouse Dmen are merely good enough to play on Cup champs every year. Bowman must be beside himself. You can’t rebuild a team with youngsters when you keep kicking the foundation of true NHL talent out from underneath them. Q used his mulligan last year. Rocky has guaranteed the leash will be very short this year, and I fully agree with everything he said.

  21. Did I say champs? Sorry Caps, it was a nice run, my kiss of death is upon you :) suffice it to say, it won’t be Kempny’s fault if they do blow it. Interesting fact: the Caps have blown more 3-1 leads than any other North American sports team (5).

  22. Although success is missing last couple of years, the question i guess is does Q abandon a system that Keith, Hammer, Seabrook etc. have used to help lead to a 3 cup dynasty or do you make exceptions for lesser players who won’t or can’t learn that system. Personally i wouldn’t want a coach who would coach that way, kudos to Q the 2nd winningest coach of alltime for going with got him there and letting chips fall.

  23. Nothing will get the attention of Mr Wirtz faster than empty seats in the UC. Remember he is still Dollar Bill’s son and money is still the driving force as it should be to the owner. I for one am glad he has put the whole team on notice, it needed to happen.

  24. I would prefer that Q abandon the system of dog housing and dumping better-than-serviceable NHL players, and more importantly than my opinion, I think his GM and owner would prefer he abandon that system as well. Hence this blog post and Rocky’s interview. Daley was a minor annoyance, I was flat out pissed at the handling of Kempny. Bowman does another wonderful job Scouting And signing an obscure player, and what we have to show for it, is one of the last pics in the third round of the draft. And while Kempnys sitting in the press box for a good portion of 2 years, exactly zero young Dmen are groomed into locked NHL positions. It’s not like this isn’t a pattern, we’ve always had a problem maintaining 4 legit starting centers, and Q proceeds to piss off Vermette to the point that he won’t talk to the team. And we still don’t have 4 centers. Yes, I would say, when the chips are down and things are heading the wrong direction, you might have to adjust your system, unless you want to adjust to a new job. I would venture a guess that Q doesn’t really give a crap at this point, and I don’t necessarily blame him, but no matter how many mulligans you’re willing to give him, it’s not up to us, and he’s on notice.

  25. Kempny is gone… So we don’t give a sh*** about him…
    Revenez s’en sacrament !
    Think about future and thats it

  26. I think the GM and owner care about winning cups and Q has 3, plus 2 more trips to conference finals, kinda trumps everything else.

  27. Steven D: it’s not so much about Kempny as Q, and specifically his handling of younger guys. Which raises the question of whether he’s the right person to guide a young team through a rebuild. I think not.
    Ian: too easy to excuse Q’s negatives by citing his past successes. No one questions that he’s a good coach, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have any flaws. He does. And given the state of the team and it’s age and talent level, etc we might be better off with a new voice. So many of your comments and analysis seem dead on to me, but I have to disagree with you about Q. Time for a change.

  28. You don’t give a sh** about a first/second pair Dman on a Stanley Cup finalist scouted by your favorite team, contract extended, then given away for a low draft pick, leaving your team with exactly 1 legit, but aging, top tier Dman, when they had 3 or 4 every time they won the Cup?

    MMMMMMMMMKAY………..

    Ian, he cashed in the mulligan he rightly earned. If this team starts out flat this season, there will be blood…

  29. Good post Bomba-Great coach but possibly not the right fit at the right time. But can anyone right this ship? So many question marks and still no personal voice from Crow-in this day and age it’s weird.

    Sparks has done well with the Marlies for three years-2.16/9.22, 1.79/936 and 2.10/9.22 and doing really well in the playoffs. The Leafs need to decide who will be their goalie and Sparks might be too good to be a backup in the NHL. Andersen is 28, in his prime.

  30. I agree that next season the core has to as Wirtz said the big contracts need to earn them. Starting off year with that not happening in the first couple of months, a new approach behind the bench may be what is needed to motivate them back to the level where the best players are that, and showing the younger guys the way.

  31. Q has been & still is a HOF coach.

    That being said, he has little tolerance for mistakes by “non-core” players, which I believe causes a rift in the locker room.

    Good coaches anticipate & adapt to the circumstances.

    If you only have a few D men capable of implementing your system, it seems unrealistic to expect the other D men to somehow magically get it… Like putting a square peg in a round hole…

    Develop a system that plays to your players strengths not their weaknesses.

    Train to win, set them up to succeed not to fail…

    (I am now stepping down from my soap box)

  32. There is blood on everyone’s hands concerning the Hawks decline……yes Kempny should have been able to help us given a chance. Yet there have been even more mistakes made on the personnel side….

    The Sharp/Johns trade for Garbutt/Daley was right after that 2015 Cup win.

    We’ve managed to dump Johns, Daley, and Kempny for nothing in return all on a team starving for young defensemen as our aging vets decline.

    Not a recipe for turning the ship around or success, as evidenced by the 3 years since that Cup win……1st round loss in Game 7 to St Louis, 1st round sweep by Nashville, to not sniffing the playoffs this year.

    It has been quite a steep and rapid decline.

    The only way out is to acquire and develop new young talent that can lift the base level of play on the team. Any improvement we have at this point will come from young guys, as the older guys stay the same or decline. That is why it makes no sense for the Hawks to be considering trading young players / prospects with picks to acquire veterans. Or to sign UFAs that are in their 30s. So many people think we need to sign James Neal it’s crazy. You might get one or two good years out of that guy and then the rest of the contract will be an albatross on a team already loaded with them.

  33. @ HEREISMIKE

    Good call, you would have to think a combination of Daley. Johns and Kempny would be better than Jordan Osterle, Gus and Rutta.

  34. Spot on Mike. The window is closed for now. Time to take the pain and commit to rebuilding. The goal should be to put a young team out there that is going to compete hard every night and get better — a team the fans can feel good about (this year’s Jets, even though they fell short, is kind of like that). Even the best teams don’t win it all very often, so if that’s all you’re in it for you’re missing the point.

  35. “The Sharp/Johns trade for Garbutt/Daley was right after that 2015 Cup win.
    We’ve managed to dump Johns, Daley, and Kempny for nothing in return all on a team starving for young defensemen as our aging vets decline”—-

    DING DING DING!
    This 100% is what stings and why I’m frustrated looking back. @Mike– Thank you for articulating it better than I could.

    Also ” it’s not so much about Kempny as Q, and specifically his handling of younger guys. Which raises the question of whether he’s the right person to guide a young team through a rebuild”. Completely valid point, @Bomba, and one that I’ve debated
    over a beverage or two this playoff season.
    Can I just say how much I enjoy reading the debates/opinions of everyone here, very refreshing and (99% of the time) well articulated without the name calling :)
    Much better than Twitter and Facebook.

  36. Hereismike-bang on with your last paragraph-the 4 or 5 guys left on the core are good, serviceable players–(other than Kane and Crow IF healthy and can return to form at 33/34)
    Hoping Toews magically goes back a few years in his play is wishful thinking, but he is a good number 2 center , and I never thought I’d say that at only 30 years of age.
    –on a great club he would be a awesome addition and perhaps a Cup difference maker.

  37. Signing someone like James Neal is only crazy if you overpay for too much term or if you think the Hawks should be trading away Toews and Kane because there’s no chance to win the SC with those guys

    As long as T and K are here they should be thinking SC – whether you fall short or not.

    Neal (as long as the term isn’t crazy) could give you a legit top 6 player who is only a year older than Toews – add him to 19, 88, Dcat, Schmaltz and Saad and that’s a good top 6

    Fix the D, Crow comes back and the window is open – maybe only for a couple of years but I think you gotta take that shot

  38. I agree Wrap but when is the last time someone signed the top UFA winger to a contract that was reasonable, for term, as well as salary?

    Neal is probably going to get 6 years like Brouwer and Backes got when they hit UFA at the same early 30’s age. And that is 4 years too long at least. Couple that last 4 years with Seabrook’s deal by then, and Toews, and maybe Saad if he doesn’t work out of his funk, and you have a real ugly problem on your hands.

    Our improvement is going to come from Schmaltz taking another step in offensive consistency and better defensive zone coverage. Dcat continuing his development as a top sniping winger. Hino and Hayden perhaps becoming those bottom 6 guys that can tilt the ice in our favor and chip in with 15-20 goals. Saad returning to form, maybe. Kempny taking another step, ….oh wait, we gave him away for the last pick in the 3rd round. Any one of the young dmen we have stepping up and flat-out earning top 4 ice time. And a back up goalie playing that doesn’t suck.

    The GM needs to balance the ‘win-now’ with the long term health of the team. The coach just needs to win now. We haven’t seen much of either lately, although the track record is there.

  39. Smart piece, done well by Rocky. He seems to have good command of the situation. I’m really interested to see what takes shape the next two months.

  40. HEREISMIKE – 10:13 am…. I agree with your logic of not signing 30 plus year old vets
    to long term deals.
    How about trying to trade at least one of our core players?
    I’m not talking about giving them away, I’m talking about trying to get a younger core.
    Something like Nashville did in trading trading Webber for Subban.
    Instead of holding onto all of our core guys until there trade value totally drops.

  41. Nick in SDiego – good point re: Vermette. Q is equal opportunity (youngsters and veterans) when it comes to abandoning or disliking certain players; it has to be personal and/or he asserts undue power over players like Kempny & Vermette for no basis from a performance standpoint. Clearly, he does it on the low key, and the media never ever addresses situations like this with him.

    Vermette is a free agent once again. He is still one of the top faceoff men in the league. Q should hold a press conference from Arlington before free agency starts and apologize to him.

  42. Stape I would say if you can trade a core player for younger assets that would be a good thing for the team at this point with one exception.

    No one wins the Stanley Cup without a number one center. Maybe the Devils did with Brodeur but it is really rare. Our best hope for a number one center is probably to see if Toews can recover from his concussions this year. If we are considering any deals for Toews, then like the Subban-Webber deal, it should be for an equivalent number one center type of player, not a package like the Montreal rumor that is floating around.

  43. re: “We’ve managed to dump Johns, Daley, and Kempny for nothing in return”

    I always love the “we had these guys and should’ve kept em” comments from a vaccuum.

    The Hawks don’t trade Johns w/ Sharp and Panarin doesn’t stay here.
    Daley didn’t work out. So be it.
    Kempny wasn’t Q’s style. We move on.

    If Kempny goes on to have a long, productive career in DC I’ll be happy for him. But I’m regularly entertained by fans – esp Blackhawks fans – who jump all over a guy who has a good/bad postseason. Kempny could be good for 6 weeks in DC and sign a multi-year deal and fall apart and never be good again and Hawks fans would be laughing “man, glad we didn’t fall for that.”

  44. The vaccuum is that we had to trade Johns and Sharp to get Panarin. False.

    Everyone knew we were moving Sharp even before the 2015 Cup run was over. There were offers for him, supposedly, at the draft that year. They either were not rich enough for the hawks management team to accept, or Sharp did not agree to the destination, we will never know. The net result was Sharp was traded too late in the offseason for there to be any amount of suitors with the cap space to take his $6 million deal off of the Hawks hands. So Dallas bent Stan over a barrel and said we will take your top prospect Johns, who had just single handedly won a playoff series for Rockford over the Stars AHL affiliate that same year.

    No big deal Daley didn’t work out. The big deal was we traded an asset like him for a washed up guy that every Penguin fan knew was the worst defenseman on a bad defensive team at that point, Rob Scuderi, who was worse than useless and cost us money off of the salary cap the following year also when he wasn’t even playing.

    Kempny got hot in the playoffs playing with a great player. He still may only be a bottom 2 guy, we don’t know yet. We do know we had about 6 defensemen play for us last season that may not be NHL quality, while Kempny has at least answered that question, after playing against top lines for 3 rounds now and doing it successfully.

    What isn’t defensible is the same guy that gave 2 2nd round picks for Timonen couldn’t negotiate an escalator for the pick he got for Kempny. It was a 2nd and a 4th for Timonen, a 3rd if we got to the conference finals, a 2nd if we won the Cup. We won so no one cares, which is fine. But the last pick in the 3rd round for a defenseman when they are at a premium at the trade deadline, and he could bump it up if Kempny plays and they win a Cup? Tell me again how Stan had no options.

    https://www.tsn.ca/talent…ades-in-history-1.1102880

  45. Well said Tab.

    “Woulda – Coulda – Shoulda”

    Every team has “steals” & “regrets”

  46. “Could be one of the best value trades in history” based on…. 40 games? He’s been terrific in the playoffs. But the hyperbole meter is going crazy right now.

  47. Hereismike, your post is one of the very best I have ever read! Well-reasoned and expressed. More than two years ago I wrote similar comments on the Sharp/Johns trade being made too late for any leverage. Daley was flipped for washed-out Scuderi. Daley ends up with a cup (as Kempny is about to).

    I have written more than once about the Timonen trade, which was the worst in Blackhawks history. He didn’t play the entire season and then was benched throughout much of the playoffs, especially during the finals. The Hawks were expected to make it to the finals that year, which meant we were forking over at least a 2nd and a 3rd. Philly must have been popping the corks after receiving this deal. I believe that Q was the main driver of this trade. And now Kempny, without a clause to move up to the (end of) the 2nd if the Caps made it to the finals (or maybe some other incentive).

    While the Hawks were very good two years ago, I was posting that Bowman has made too many drafting and trading errors, while most others were backing him incessantly. This has now come home to roost.

  48. Ever since I posted that, after people were sucking on how good this guy is now, the expansion team lost 4 games in a row.

  49. I actually laughed at O6’s comment about blasting Bowman 2 years ago for not drafting well. Before we all pat ourselves on the back for jumping off a bridge in the past, let’s rewind and discuss w/ a little context.

    Original6 complained 2 years ago that Stan Bowman’s “recent drafts” weren’t going to do anything to help the Blackhawks in the future. He was speaking, at that time, specifically about the 2013 and 2014 draft classes. So, just to make sure O6 still wants to pat himself on the back for being such an all-knowing fortune teller, let’s look at the draft classes he was specifically complaining about.

    2013:
    Ryan Hartman
    Carl Dahlstrom
    John Hayden
    Robin Norell
    Tyler Motte
    Luke Johnson
    Anthony Louis
    Robin Press

    2014:
    Nick Schmaltz
    Matt Iacopelli
    Beau Starrett
    Fredrik Olofsson
    Luc Snuggerud
    Andreas Soderberg
    Dylan Sikura
    Ivan Nalimov
    Jack Ramsey

  50. I don’t think the Hawks have done any better or any worse at drafting than the average NHL team recently. They haven’t been killing it but haven’t gotten shut out of having any NHL players in drafts either.

    The problem has been the pro personnel department has been getting killed on assessing other NHL players and trades for 3 years running now. The Timonen trade sucked. The Sharp trade sucked. The Panarin trade sucked. The Danault trade sucked. The Kempny trade was not really a big deal because we weren’t using him, but seems like a big waste in retrospect. The Hjalmersson trade for Murphy to this point really hasn’t worked out. It might in the future but it set our defense back this past year certainly. The Ladd trade wasted a 1st round pick but was a justifiable risk to try to repeat.

    And I am sure there are others I am missing. The point is you can lose a trade here and there, but when you string together so many bad ones over a 2.5 year time period, let’s just say if it wasn’t for the 3 Cups insulating them, that side of the staff (the pro personnel scouts) would HAVE to have been fired a while ago now, if not the GM too.

  51. Glad the organization sent Kempny to team where he had a chance to succeed as they did with Daley, happy for him. Classy move not trying to bury him where he couldn’t embarass them.

    Pretty impressive looking draft classes listed there to me, hopefully we will look back at this years as successful too.

  52. wrap around, that’s the thing its fine to add top ufa guys. We need to get 1 or 2 back by not having Hoss and Hammer. Also the rise of the younger players. Then its back.

    Getting 1 or 2 top ufa is not going to hurt the team or keeping the younger players. The young guys are coming no matter what.

    We should add 1 or 2 top ufa guys, so when the young guys start prime yrs/become really good, we will have a good and deep roster. Instead of trying to add a ufa guy then/later.

    We can make cap work, if need be.

    Its better to have, then to try an add later.

  53. I am glad for 6 to. He made us look good by playing and being good for WAS.

    It was nice to hear the words Chicago Blackhawks very loud on tv when he scored the goal that broke the expansions team will in game 4.

    Even Eddie O had to pause to soak that in, before he could say good pass by that 92 guy.

    Kempny is not a top pair guy. Be nice to have him, prob not signing here after 2 yrs of signing here anyways so good for him to make us proud and make the Blackhawks look good.

    That could/will help in trade relations as other teams will want to trade more/better return for our guys/or etc.

  54. Tab, sorry to disappoint, but I don’t pat myself on the back. There are others who follow the Blackhawks that I have spoken to who shared similar views as well.

    Regarding SB’s drafting I was considering all years as well as not drafting/trading for a quality goalie to backup/replace Crawford:

    2010 traded a 2nd round pick to move up from 30 to 24 to select Kevin Hayes. Then decided to let him walk.

    2011: McNeill (18th) and Danault (26). McNeill a bust and Danault traded for two rentals. Saad was a great pick but then sent to Columbus in a panic cap trade. It would have been worth unloading Sharp for next-to-nothing in order to keep Saad. Reclaimed Saad in another panic cap trade for Panarin.

    After trading the 1st round pick for Vermette in 2015, it was too risky to repeat this in 2016 for another rental (Ladd).

  55. I think the thought, and I think it was absolutely right to try, was in 14 we didn’t add much and we didn’t win 2 in a row (earn it/no goalie interference allowed goal) so when we won in 15 with adding a really good player, did same in 16 to add and not just tinker, in what really should have been a shot a 4 in a row.

    I think we see a different and more aggressive moves now and then during games 20-40 if needed. Were going to right the path in the direction we all want.

  56. Also think hockey had better teams from 2005-2015. These past 3 yrs the teams are watered down, which allowed teams like PIT to win (with help).

    League is fast thought then those 10 yrs so that’s a difference that deceiving to looking better. Salary cap goes up now and up a lot, so well get to see some real top 5 teams again. Non of this stinkin water downed top5 teams and give passes and automatic established players to bottom 10 teams.

    Vegas deserves to be a bottom 10 tem for at least 5 yrs. What a disgrace it is for Bettman to do that and then give them no protection list. What a joke.

  57. @morrison. Hmm really. U pay 500 mil exspansion fee. And u think they should suck for 5 years ! Joke. Guess GM had nothing to do with it. Not to mention he was Caps GM. OMG a GM who did his job and managed Cap without giving away the farm ! And players that came to play hard every game. Laid it out. And. Had went thru 4 goalies to use and keep winning. ! AMAZING when a player a team didn’t want plays extra hard to prove he was good! Or a coach got fired and put 4 lines together that played like a unit. ! A team that was fast. Hit and new how to score on Pwr play ! I guess the other teams or bottom feeders don’t have the same option to get guys in free agency or trades or spend cap money wisely ! Maybe u should look at knights roster salaries and what they had left in cap ! Oh Bettman took the chance and Vegas delivered in every aspect on a NHL team and city responded and probably the reason the cap jumped highest in so many years. Blackhawks GM gave contracts that were done wrong and didn’t move high cap players Started with Bickel and so! Those contracts costed us the future that they needed. And last 3 years showed it. Now that other teams in are conf. Are set it will be no cake walk for the hawks anymore. While they get older. Congrats to Vegas doing a great job for a NHL team and it’s city. Gave fans more for there tickets. Before during and even after a game. Class act team.

  58. They should suck, like every expansion team in history of hockey.
    Really 5 or more yrs.

    Those player shouldn’t really be on a team. The Vegas team should have the rosters of ARI. Relocation. Bettman save teams losing money for decade etc to create a exp draft that way.

    I donot have anything against those players on that team. Just everything do with how they were given an entire roster of established players instead of free agents and draft picks. That’s why all expansion teams should suck for 5 or more yrs.

    That was bas enough. To top it off with no players need to be protected for next esp. draft.

    They bought it, not earned it (even though their play was earned/other then AJ facting their silly bounces)

  59. I know you like them and not trying to say bad things about them just because or how good they did.

    Its the way they got their roster and now this. Also the way Bettman protected the teams that should have been forced to relocate and have the new city/etc pay relocation fee. That waterdowned the top 5 teams etc by cutting how high the salary cap would have gone, if not relocating to better markets/worthy cities.

  60. Even though its not the same for every team, which makes it unfair or disadvantage. I wouldn’t have much of a problem with it, if the salary cap went up as much as it should have the previous 3-5 yrs. Now it will, but those recent yrs were it would have really screwed certain teams.

    Sort of seems like hmm why did it to that on those yrs/contract yrs of 19 and 88 and etc. Sounds kind of fishy guys.

  61. Mo I think for the last few years the salary cap was deliberately low balled to get ownership deals in place for Vegas and Seattle. Now that they are in place we are seeing cap increases. Speaking of the Cap the players escrow payments are down to about 8.6% from 11.5%. They were over 13% a coupke of years ago. This should mean if i understand it right they are in pretty good shape to add an escalator to projected cap increase so it may end up closer to 82m than 78m.

  62. Here’s the kicker on the salary cap issue. Which after waiting 50 years for a cup. Clown dollar BILL WIRTZ WAS the bozo who got owners to implicate it. Then Rocky New what was needed that the old man wouldn’t ! And bam hawks became a Chicago team that everyone forgot about. To are own implementation we won cup and cap happens. Lost guys but kept enough and they were young. After the 3 rd. Cup bickel seabs got over priced contracts and there was start of cash strapped. Also think 19/88. Contacts should of been escalated every year to that price. Not instantly. As for others shit teams. There area or team can’t handle max cap n out. So they do minimum cap and wait for the visiting team fans to fill there stadium! There’s many reason why teams suck and unless u have right people in place they will continue to suck. I actually thought Arizona should have been sent to Quebec years ago. Rangers hawks vanc Montreal Sucked. All big markets but players didn’t perform! Yes cap sucked earlier 3 years. And should of been higher since Saad trade. I don’t think league is watered down. I think they over paid big star players and Edmonton now did it and didn’t consider how many guys are on a team. Just because expansion teams suck that should be MO. That kills the NHL. So they changed it. And made owner pay out the ass. In fact I heard Seattle could be at 700 mil range. If that what it takes to raise the cap so be it ! There’s enough players in world leagues to find talent. Instead of hanging on players and over paying there value ! The only thing knights bought was guys that weren’t paid much and they played like hell ! Those guys were in final year of contracts starting with karlsson ! They played with chip on shoulder and went out & gave 100%. And the draft bulshit ping pong ball is bulshit. Just give the worse team the pik. And rearranging playoff format is bulshit. Hawks should of played 8 th seed years ago not 4 th seed in div. that’s bulshit! What’s the purpose of having best record ! Only team bettman protected was shitty coyotes and they should of been sold 5 years ago ! Now they actually seem ok first time I remember! As for unfair disadvantage. Cap in place since 2010 maybe teams should manage it cause each team could spend same amount. Or do minimum! I been hawks fan 57 years 71 Wirtz wouldn’t pay hull. It changed everything! Vegas has been Hawks Kings town till last year. I hate SB. He was to generous then broke up #1 scoring line in NHL to please Toews Panarin was Kane jr only in his 2 Nd year and they scored on PWR play. And shootouts which we haven’t done . I been commenting since feb dump 15 mil in cap nothing. And there older now. We need a backup and. More cap space to kickass again. When he put seabs Keith Towes Kane and Saad on line to help cry baby C. Get going add that lines salary. That’s the joke of all jokes. SB sucks glad he only has a year to pull a rabbit out of his ass. Q. Resume speaks for itself. Seabs and Keith won’t pinch no more cause they can’t get back fast enough or score like they use to There’s a start of 14 mil Saad doesn’t impress me and 19 got a pass last 2 years. So go young fast and bigger. I gladly waste 3 years of that development to see that. I stopped watching the moment Cory went down. By the way I moved to Vegas 15 years ago and what the knights do at there game is what I wish all teams did before games and during intermission and faceoff. Hockey tiks are expensive and they give u much more then a seat. Hawks were the premier team to follow. I’m telling u knights took that page and added there own to give fans money worth. The owner didn’t pocket the cash and put a coyote team out there. They did there homework and it paid off. Unless u had a GM that did his research he could of picked wrong guys. And they would of sucked for 5 years. How many times have teams had piks and they busted out. SB needs to get scouts around every league in world. And evaluate in his last shot. Just what I see with this team last 3 years. Complaisant to. There not hungry or doing what it takes. Knights did all year every game. It paid off. To beat the teams they beat showed u how bad they worked. Kings Sharks Jets. Have great teams but was out worked and played for 60 minutes. We seen the hawks play that way for 7 years.

  63. Slammer top 5 all time biggest paragraph. Impressive but beyond most people’s attention span.

  64. Cap space shouldn’t be an issue, 68.7m with 17 of 23 roster spots taken. Move Hossa’s and 63.5m used for 16 spots and cap going to 80 to 81m likely. Hino, Hayden, Kampf, Jurco and Ejdsell take 5 spots with lots left for 2 or 3 spots. Murphy and/or Rutta give room if needed for rfa signings next year and Crawford off tbe books in 2 years for giving room.

  65. That’s 16.5 or 18.5m for us to use this summer for 7 of 23man. Like you, other will come off in these yrs as well so that will cover raises etc.

    Lots of options, lets use them and get back sooner then later with 19/88/2. The young guys are here/coming no matter what. So lets add add/81 and 4.

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