Thank You, Andrew Shaw

With the 139th overall selection in the fifth round of the 2011 NHL Draft, the Blackhawks picked an undersized forward who was roughly three weeks away from his 20th birthday.

Nobody really got excited about the pick. The kid had been passed on before and late round picks rarely turn into much. If he never saw the NHL, nobody would notice.

The kid came to the Hawks’ prospect camp that summer and immediately tried to make a name for himself. In spite of his 5-10 frame, he dropped the mitts with anyone who wanted to dance. But he also played the game hard in every scrimmage, and caught the eye of the Hawks’ front office.

On August 4 of that year, he got a contract with the Rockford IceHogs. In doing so, he became the first member of the Blackhawks’ 2011 draft class to join the AHL roster, even if it wasn’t on an NHL contract.

Fast forward a few months. Chicago needed some help at the NHL level, so on Jan. 3 they signed the kid to an entry-level NHL contract.

Two days later, he scored his first NHL goal.

Andrew Shaw, the undersized kid who had scored only 33 goals in 134 games over two seasons in the OHL before being drafted by the Hawks, was in the NHL. And he didn’t go away.

He split the 2011-12 season between Chicago and Rockford, but managed to put up 12 goals and 11 assists in only 37 games in the NHL.

In the playoffs after his rookie season, Shaw jumped into the league-wide conversation when he bumped into Coyotes goaltender Mike Smith and was subsequently suspended three games. The punishment was laughable, but the event made Shaw a name people across the league would remember.

One year later, Shaw came off the lockout-shortened regular season and had a nice postseason. In his first Stanley Cup Final game, Shaw scored the goal that mattered most.

When he got done loving his equipment and his teammates, Shaw and the Hawks went on to raise the Stanley Cup in 2013.

Barely a month into the following season, Chicago gave Shaw a two-year extension. He celebrated the deal by having the best season of his career, reaching 20 goals and playing in 80 games (both still career highs).

Over the two seasons after the 2013 Cup, not everything was perfect for Shaw’s Cinderella story. He missed a couple games during the 2014 postseason because of injury, there was an ejection for head-butting at the end of the 2014-15 regular season and later a fine for diving.

But once again in 2015, he was in the right spot at the right time when the money was on the table.

The header didn’t count, but it is a terrific microcosm of Shaw doing whatever it takes to help his team.

Throughout his 322 regular season games with the Blackhawks, Shaw played hard; nobody has ever been able to question his intensity. Indeed, at times his energy was a detriment to the team. But he always brought it.

Unfortunately, his intensity got him into trouble and his actions (more specifically, his words) will leave an unfortunate lasting impression on many fans. Shaw was suspended for Game 5 of this year’s playoff series, and his teammates needed him.

Shaw ranks 11th from the 2011 NHL Draft with 137 career points. His 70 career regular season goals rank fourth from that class, trailing only the top two picks (Gabriel Landeskog, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins) and former teammate Brandon Saad. And his 300 penalty minutes make him the current leader from that draft.

The kid the Hawks picked without much fan attention five years ago did well for his time in Chicago. He will be missed on the ice and was a fan favorite off the ice as well.

44 thoughts on “Thank You, Andrew Shaw

  1. We will miss you Shaw…

    Thx for the heart ,hustle, blood and sweat…

    It seems like only yesterday, when i called it hear on Tab’s site… that the Hawks would call him up… overachiever! !!!

    And Tab, said i was drunk on bong water!!!

    Sorry Tab… couldn’t resist. ..

  2. Just don’t get it. Trade Saad. Tradwme Teuvo. Trade Shaw. Keep an aging Hossa. Makes no sense. I know there are some quirks to 81’s contract, but fuck. He’s literally getting worse by the season.

  3. It sure would have been nice if Toews and Kane could have found a way to sign 9.25 mill a year instead of the 10.5. I get it that they’re the face of the franchise and all, but in terms of being part of a continued competitive team, that extra 2.5 mil/year sure would have helped.

    Best to 65. I’ll miss his spirit, and skill.

  4. An amazing Hawk, hopefully he will have a return tour down the line. Thanks for the heart, hustle and intangibles, Mr Shaw.

  5. He was our MVP in this year’s playoffs. No more net front presence. High character locker room guy. Let’s not look at goal production in a vacuum. Shaw showed up for the big games. This sucks.

  6. Tab – Nice article as always. Sad day for Hawk fans but Shawzie was an amazing 5th round pick who worked his ass off for everything he got. Still hard to believe someone is going to pay him over $4m – actually blows me away. Maybe we can recreate the success of the 2011 draft with the extra picks. I assume this means Krugs is not going anywhere. Lots of spots to fill in the bottom 6 – SB has his work cut out.

  7. Nice write-up and good luck to him. He always paid the price and more and is forever a part of our history.

    Two picks in first half of second round is not a bad return at all, although picks are always a crap shoot. For every Saad there are way more Clendenings.

    Now c’mon Stan, let’s grab a couple of big SHD who we can target to fill those 4-6 spots. We have enough smurfs.

  8. I am gutted by this trade. The team has lost a very important asset. Shaw bled for this team and for us fans. It’s a very sad day for me to see Shaw gone for a few picks.? Let’s see what Habs pay him. I hate the cap.

    Let’s Go Hawks!

  9. Really tough one. Good luck to Shaw. The kid made some big headlines for us, some great, some not so, but he always brought his best effort every night. I’ll miss him.

  10. I can’t believe it. This hurts worse than the Saad trade for me. He’ll be missed greatly. Hope he does as well for Montreal. Thank you Andrew Shaw indeed.

  11. I’m glad Shaw didn’t go to some douchebag team like Canucks or Flyers although you never know, he could end up coming back at some point to suit up against us regularly like Brouwer did (although less likely if he gets the big contract possibly with movement/trade clauses). Going to Montreal I guess the Bergevin connection is still alive and ticking.

  12. Major loss. He was the gutsy warrior who did the grindy dirty work that too few on this team were prepared or willing to do. Major major loss. I wish him well in Montreal and I hope he gets every penny he thinks he can command on the market.

    2016-17 is going to be a painful transition year. Hope we can back into the playoffs. Hope that we make some astute picks in the draft and that a pipeline of young talent can be ready to deliver in 2-3 years. Maybe we can get back to Cup contention in a couple of seasons, ala Pittsburgh.

    Damned, Bowman has his work cut out for him.

  13. Nice writeup, Tab.
    I’ll miss Shaw. I’ll remember him as a bulldog who brought it all the time. Every season brings changes, but the Blackhawks have stayed competitive always.

    Glad he went to the East. Best of luck to the kid, and congratulations to him on being able to get the money (in all likelihood) in a game where it counts to get it when you can.


  14. …and Panarin will surely be priced out of our ability to pay next summer. And so the story goes.

  15. I think it’s Stan’s way of forcing Q to learn to nurture rookies… tired of hearing “but Q won three Cups”… just remember, there’s nothing constant in life but change… it’s time for Q to work with what he’s given, not what he wants,,,I think Stan is tired of Q
    not playing rookies or the vet’s he;s traded for..

  16. Montreal is a good fit for Shaw..the fans there will luv him with his play. Bad blow for us..he was a Blackhawk.

  17. If trading Shaw means keeping Ladd, this is a very good move.

    No immediate need to extend Panarin. Maybe Sb trades Kruger next year to create space for Artemi.

    Either way, nice return for Shaw trade.

  18. Rhaz – I’ve critiqued Q in the past and I’m never comfortable doing it, frankly. But there is some truth to what you say.

  19. Still do not understand why on earth that head butt goal didn’t count. For all the stupid, crappy, sneaky, cheatin’ goals allowed this requires skill. It would add a dimension to goal scoring and fan excitement. God forbid the NHL does anything that innovative.

  20. Panik – Toews – Kane
    Panarin – Anisimov – Schmaltz
    Motte – Kruger – Hossa
    Hartman – Hinostraza – Mashinter

    Keith – Seabrook
    CAMPBELL – Hjalmarsson
    Gustafsson / Kempney – van Riemsdyk


  21. What rookies didn’t Quenneville “nurture” over the years? Hjalmarsson, Leddy, van Riemsdyk, Crawford, Saad, Shaw, Panarin, Kruger, Smith, Bollig all entered the league with Quenneville as their first head coach in Chicago. So kindly explain this rotten aversion he has to playing and developing young talent. The audience anxiously awaits your analysis.

  22. Good luck Shawzie. Now we have little to no toughness, our d is lacking, our pk sucks, and our puck control is way down. Don’t know about the rest of you on here, but Big Earls line-up does nothing for me. If this is what we have to go into the season with, you may as well blow up the core and bring in picks and youth. Otherwise we will be a lottery team in 2-4 seasons. Sorry, I have a sinking feeling that the run is over.

  23. Tony, I am just finding it hard to be optimistic as strapped as we are with the cap, the players in the pipeline, and the lack of picks.

  24. I have said many times and I truly believe, the Hawks would not have won 3 Cups and been in 5 WCF over the last 7 years without the Cap. Repeating as SC champs is all but impossible. 3 Cups in 6 years was supposed to be impossible. So the Hawks need a couple of years to rebuild, I can take that. Seeing that happen is part of the fun.

  25. Hartnell only a 4.75 mil cap hit. Give Columbus number 50 and have them pick up half . At 2.375 for three years Scotty would look good in an Indian Head sweater.

  26. Thank you and good luck, Andrew Shaw.

    You never took a shift off. Like Keith Magnuson, you gave everything you had for the team. And your name is on the Cup. Twice.

    Wow. It’s a tough day to be a Black Hawks fan. Still waiting for the sun to come up.
    Hopefully there’s at least one Andrew Shaw bobblehead left on Ebay.


  27. Panik Toews Hossa
    Panarin Anisimov Kane
    Schmaltz Kruger Motte
    Kero Desi Weise

    Seabs Kempy
    Keith van Riemsdyk
    Hammer Forsling

    Crow Darling

    with Hartman Fleishman Moose Gustafsson

    $72,587,127 TOTAL ($4,295,000 in overages and retained included)

  28. Brutal business. Just brutal. Saad, Sharp, Oduya, and Shaw in just about a year. Absolutely brutal. Thats a lot of stud hockey players sent packing. And who’s to say it’s over.

  29. We are in way better shape after 15 and 16, then we were in 10. Bowman kept the right players for the core. Even though lady was the best player to keep of the ones we didn’t then. Big Buff and Laddy were not as good/important as the others. Not comparing 86 and 65 (and I love Tayvo and Shawzer) to those guys but its the same diff, were keeping the best of the best.

    We kept the best of the best and that is why we won (essentially 3 cups in a row) once we had a deep roster again and why we can win a couple moar cups, again.

    The diff is we are still a top 3 team, we wernt in ’11 (playing short handed with 6 ahl players). Then we had guys like 65 and 20 coming. Now we have guys like 20 and 8 coming. 10 years of 72 prime replaces the 10 years of 10 prime yrs.

    The beauty of the Bowmans, is everyone of our core players (72 contract comes to full circle to 10s 6m caphit) is at the highest caphits their going to be at in their careers. Which means every yr from now on we can add higher role player caphits and pay/keep the good young players. Big picture.

    Just have to dance with the salary cap every few yrs. Then the top core in hockey does its thing.

  30. It all comes down to wins and loses. if the Hawks continue to be competitive cool , if they dont Rocky will be looking for a new GM in 3 or 4 years. you cant continue to lose quality role players like Saad Sharp Shaw Buff Ladd . God with those players you can start your own team I like crawford but could his salary have been used to keep any of these players with deals and such

  31. One of the memories I have of Shaw that has stuck with me is a trip I made to Johnny’s IH West one summer afternoon in ’11 to check out the young kids in the prospect camp. Obviously, I had no clue who the kid was that virtually ran another skater through the boards onto Madison Ave. The scrimmage came to a screeching halt as the trainers had to come onto the ice and carry off that unfortunate recipient of the hit. I have no recollection of who is was that got plastered but I immediately saw that the kid that did the deed had ‘Shaw’ on the back of the jersey. Never forgot that hit as I figured the brass would not have been too pleased with that level of contact in a team scrimmage. I then watched as play soon resumed and that same kid never turned down the intensity. When he got the call up as described in Tab’s article I immediately thought of that summer afternoon scrimmage at Johnny’s.

    Any of you other readers there that day and recall the hit I’m describing? Probably, as I remember the place was packed to the hilt that hot, summer day.

    For as frustrating as the kid made me at times, the Hawks will be hard pressed to replace the sandpaper and various roles he assumed. I hope they can.

    Good luck Shawsie.

  32. Some nice posts guys. I have been slowly digesting the reality of a Shawless Hawks squad looking to next season. It doesn’t feel good at all. I like the optimism though in Mo’s post. I want to believe that this is the way I should view the future for this team. While it is certainly open to debate, I viewed Shaw as a core guy that is not going to be easily replaced. He brought quite a bit to the team from what he did on and off the ice. Hate the cap!

    Montreal will absolutely love this guy. I wish nothing but the best for our “mutt” that got away. At least he is not going to be playing in the Western Conf., or better yet not in the Central. The rat will get under some Eastern Conference skin and when paired with Gallagher those 2 are going to wreak some havoc for the Habs.

    Bought a Shaw Hawks t shirt back when he first came up with the team. That shirt has seen some stirring Hawks victories on my back at the UC and in front of the TV. I have worn it the past 2 days and consider that as flying the Shaw flag at half mast to honor him as a Hawks player we will never forget.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  33. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. A Shaw on the ice is worth two in the draft!!!! What a mistake!!!

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