Central Division Cap Situations

With the retirement of Nicklas Lidstrom in Detroit becoming official, there should be two immediate responses from Blackhawks fans:

  1. Respect. He was the best of his era.
  2. Fear. The Wings now have an enormous amount of cap space.

Looking around the Central Division, this will be an interesting summer. And teams will have some money to play with as they put together their rosters for the 2012-13 season.

What follows is a look at the cap situation of the teams in the Central Division as we close in on free agency. The projected payroll figures and rosters cited are from CapGeek.com. The estimated cap space reflects the $64.3M cap ceiling used for the 2011-12 season.

Chicago Blackhawks
Players Signed: 22
Projected Payroll: $61,490,128
Estimate Cap Space: $2,809,872

The Hawks’ roster includes a few 2011-12 rookies: Andrew Shaw, Jimmy Hayes and Dylan Olsen. It does not include potential 2012-13 rookies such as Brandon Saad or Jeremy Morin. Obviously the Hawks have a filled roster and some players they might like to see at the NHL level, so Stan Bowman’s recent comments about additional changes leaves the door open for intrigue this summer.

Detroit Red Wings
Players Signed: 18
Projected Payroll: $44,042,045
Estimate Cap Space: $20,257,955

CapGeek includes Jan Mursak, Gustav Nyquist and Brendan Smith in those 18 roster spots (with good reason), which is why the rest of the NHL should be fearful of what could be coming this summer in Detroit.

They’re losing their captain and one of the best defenseman of all-time, but they’ll have over $20M in cap space to replace him (with Ryan Suter) and add a couple more marquee free agents while still having their top tier forwards and Niklas Kronwall back.

St. Louis Blues
Players Signed: 16
Projected Payroll: $35,895,833
Estimate Cap Space: $28,404,167

The Blues are looking at two consecutive summers that will hold the next decade of their organization in the balance; only two players on their NHL roster are signed after July 1, 2014 (Roman Polak and David Backes).

This summer, TJ Oshie, Chris Stewart and David Perron are restricted free agents, while their free agent class of 2013 includes Alex Pietrangelo, Kevin Shattenkirk, Ian Cole and Patrick Berglund. While they have a great deal of cap space this summer, they also have some significant decisions (read: major financial commitments) coming in the next 13 months.

Nashville Predators
Players Signed: 12
Projected Payroll: $32,154,167
Estimate Cap Space: $32,145,833

The Preds are committed to only 50 percent of the cap right now, and have roughly half of a roster to fill between now and September. Obviously Ryan Suter (unrestricted) and Shea Weber (restricted) are the headline-grabbing free agents in Nashville, but there are more players they need to speak with before July 1.

Forwards Colin Wilson, Sergei Kostitsyn and Alexander Radulov, defenseman Jack Hillen and backup goalie Anders Lindback are all restricted free agents this summer. Andrei Kostitsyn, Paul Gaustad, Hal Gill and Francis Bouillon will become unrestricted free agents when June ends. And, like St. Louis, the Preds will be busy again next summer; only three skaters on their roster – Martin Erat, David Legwand and Ryan Ellis – are signed past next season.

Columbus Blue Jackets
Players Signed: 18*
Projected Payroll: $48,883,809*
Estimated Cap Space: $15,416,191*

Why the asterisk? They’re trying to find a new home for Rick Nash this summer, which will change both the makeup of their 2012-13 roster/payroll and the future of the organization. Not knowing what will replace Nash (and his $7.800M cap hit) on the roster makes the Blue Jackets a bit of a wild card when trying to project a roster and cap space.

Looking forward, Columbus has $17.4M committed to four defensemen through the 2014-15 season already. Their approach to rebuilding has been highlighted by long-term deals on the books for James Wisniewski, Fedor Tyutin and Jack Johnson, who will make over $14M in cap hit through the 2016-17 season.

46 thoughts on “Central Division Cap Situations

  • May 31, 2012 at 1:41 pm

    Detroit definitely has plenty of money, but assuming they want to bring back Hudler and Stuart (or let Stuart go and bring in someone else, but at a similar skill/salary level) as well as re-up Helm and Abdelkader, thats going to eat up about $12M of their cap room. That still leaves them with enough money for Suter, but really not much else (probably a better backup goalie). So Detroit is basically going to be the same team as they were this year, just subbing Suter for Lidstrom.

  • May 31, 2012 at 5:44 pm

    The thing that people need to understand is that for Suter, playing close to home (Madison, Wisconsin) is number one to him…playing for an organization that he has ties with is another, and playing for a winner is crucial as well…

    The Hawks lead the way in all 3 categories…no stadium is closer to Madison than the Madhouse…Suter’s uncle (I believe) played for the Hawks and still has close ties to the organization…the Hawks are 2 years removed from a Cup with one of the best talent pools in the league…plus few are in a better situation to understand what the Hawks need to put them over the top than Suter himself (playing on Nashville)…he is likely aware that the Hawks are a physical DMan and a 2nd Centre away from becoming favourites to win another cup…

    The Hawks would have to make a trade (see Hammer and Bolland) to be able to free up Cap space and roster room, but watch for it to happen…Suter to the Wings puts the Hawks in a VERY difficult spot in their own division…Suter on the Hawks makes us very dangerous to win another Cup…its really that simple.

  • May 31, 2012 at 5:44 pm

    good point, ozzzie. I would estimate that Abdelkader and Helm would be back for around $2.5M combined, if even that (they combined for around $1.6M in cap hit last year). Stuart won’t be back, and while Hudler certainly had a nice season, he might be viewed as a fallback if they can’t get Parise out of New Jersey. With the cap expected to go up again, the Red Wings could have enough to offer between $12-16M combined to Parise & Suter and still afford a few in-house veterans. Scary.

  • May 31, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    I hate having to continue bringing this up, but Suter isn’t coming to Chicago. I’m sorry Brad, but while it might seem that simple, it isn’t.

  • May 31, 2012 at 7:57 pm

    Wishful thinking on his part, Tab.

  • May 31, 2012 at 9:34 pm


    Would you please explain why you are so sure Suter isn’t coming to Chicago? I know we signed Oduya but Montador is questionable to return which would free up his cap space plus nothing stops the Hawks from moving 1 or more other players (i.e. Hammer).

  • May 31, 2012 at 9:40 pm

    Montador would have to retire to “clear up cap space,” and Bowman said the organization is hopeful that he’s 100% and ready to go in September. If the Blackhawks buy him out, his 2012-13 cap hit would be $1,161,111 (and the same in 2013-14, up to $1,661,111 in 2014-15, and then three seasons at $711,111).

    IF (huge if) the cap goes up to as high as $70.3M (which Bob McKenzie reported would be the ceiling for this summer’s adjustment), the Blackhawks have a little over $8M to fill their roster and have 6-7 defensemen already inked. They also have a pretty fair amount of organizational depth coming on the blue line (Clendening, Johns, Holl still in college). If the Blackhawks were going to sign another top-four defenseman for over 5 years, I doubt they would have given Klas Dahlbeck an entry-level deal already.

    It’s just reality, Joe. Suter’s a top pair guy who’s going to get paid top pair money and the Blackhawks already have (and are paying) their top pair. It’s not happening.

  • May 31, 2012 at 10:32 pm


    maybe we need a top pair guy on our 2nd pair? or maybe since the end of the reign of king kiefer is fast approaching, suter could have that top pairing? This done, keifer sutherland can be the one to to help develop the young blueliners, rather than the hammer – who has no business in such a role.

    By this I mean to say:

    I am unhappy with Oduya signing. I know it’s unfair of me, but Doan’s stripping of the puck off Oduya and scoring in round 1 is written indelibly upon my mind. Surely I am not alone in having this lasting impression. The chips were down and Oduya let Shane ‘Lady Byng’ Doan make a mockery of the team, the fans and really the entire city of Chicago, if not the state of Illinois. I almost wanted to give up on life and watch the Scotties Tournament of Hearts.

    For Shame, Stan.

  • May 31, 2012 at 11:13 pm

    Looking at this Detroit and St.Louis really worry me for the future. Detroit could end up with Suter and/or Parise and with a few dangerous prospects coming up (as you mentioned) they should be significantly better than this years team. St.Louis worries me because how deep they already are, add Schwartz and Tarasenko to that and this is going to be one of the best teams in the league for some time(given the fact the players don’t become too expensive to keep).

  • May 31, 2012 at 11:55 pm

    I guess cap space condidered it doesn’t look like Suter will be a Blackhawk(?). It’s not the end of the world. I don’t think they’ll move Kane, but some version of the Kane-for-Nash deal might be a (great) “Plan B”? Stalberg is included in the rumors – I like his speed…is there a reason to move him? Roald – I don’t understand basing judgement of Oduya on one play. He has above average skating and puck moving skill – transition is paramount to the puck control game that the Hawks play when they’re at their best. Keith – what happened to him? “Trying to do too much” is bs. (How do you tell a player to try to do less…?) He left his game in his “One Goal” commercial? I believe this is a LARGE part of why the Hawks PP & PK sucks, and why they’ve exited early the last two seasons. Thoughts?

  • June 1, 2012 at 7:44 am

    The Hawks to get Suter would need to dump Frolik’s, Hammer’s and probably Montador’s salary to be able to sign him and get a useful forward to kill penalties and win draws.

    Re-upping Oduya pretty much says no dice on Suter unless wholesale changes are coming.

    Lots of stuff being flung around regarding Kane rumors (of course), Hossa rumors (next Savard), Hammer rumors, Bolland rumors and all kinds of crazy stuff. Nothing really substantial regarding any of it aside from everyone predicting shortened/missed season.

  • June 1, 2012 at 8:15 am

    I see the Hawks in very good position to make a big trade. They have good depth at both defense and forward. They could pair one or two of the young players (i.e. Olsen, Saad, Hayes, Shaw, etc) with a veteran (i.e. Hammer, Montador, Bolland, Stahlberg, etc) for a top-six forward or top-four defenseman.

    I see a bunch of activity this summer on the trade front. There is no way they bring back the same team.

  • June 1, 2012 at 9:46 am

    “Nothing really substantial regarding any of it aside from everyone predicting shortened/missed season.” — REALLY? Obviously, the media loves to play-up the negative. Negotiations haven’t started. Both sides must be aware of the NFL and NBA recent CBA problems and that the NHL doesn’t compare ($$/exposure/fan base). It may be a long shot, but I would like to believe intelligence will triumph over GREED.

  • June 1, 2012 at 9:49 am

    to Dickie’s point, the NBA and NFL had extended lockouts with a CBA that expired quickly after their respective seasons ended. The NHL CBA doesn’t expire until mid-September… when trainining camp is ready to go and hockey is already at the “don’t wanna miss games” part of the discussion that didn’t happen until the other two leagues had been locked out for a few months. Different scenario.

  • June 1, 2012 at 10:27 am

    No Tab, it could be that simple. Everything I stated is fact, from Suter’s lips…he wants to play close to home, he wants to be on a winner, and he wants to be part of a strong organization…his family has strong, positive ties to the Hawks and Rocky Wirtz…the Madhouse is the closest locale to Madison and Suter knows how good Toews, Hossa, and company are…I think Suter would like to play with a mobile partner like Keith or another bruiser in Seabrook…so, I say it again, Suter to the Hawks is very real…the Hawks would need to move Hammer and lose Montador…the resulting group would look like this…


    Each pair has a fast, puck moving DMan and a strong, physical, stay at home guy…plus the dollars would make sense as well…Leddy and Olsen average a million each, Oduya at $3.3 million, Sebs and Keith average $5.5 million, and Suter at say $6.8 million. That is a total of $23 million for 6 DMen…a grouping that could win us another Cup…last year we spent $22 million for 7 DMen, including Oduya…

    So, why won’t this happen??? Can Detroit outbid us? Yes, but the Hawks can afford to chase up to $7 million…do the Red Wings want to spend record breaking numbers on Suter long term? And does Suter prefer the Hawks (for all the reasons he himself has already stated) for a fair monetary deal?

    I believe that Suter will do 1 of 2 things…re up with Nashville, or come to Chicago. We have the desperate need and we do have the room…for an extra million dollars we can have a D corp that can win us a Cup, and not have us exiting in the first round, yet again.

    Plus, recently Toews stated that more and more the Hawks are consulting him on which players to target via trades and FA…if Toews were to pick one guy to add to the team, and not have to play against in his own division, short of Weber, it would likely be Suter.

  • June 1, 2012 at 10:53 am

    Donald Fehr is working on side of the players unions. He is a dick extraordinaire.

    Bettman is a moron.

    Those two together in the same room trying to hammer out a deal is a scary thought.

    Also, keep in mind that while some franchises are bringing in dollars, there are more that are bleeding cash. Even with a salary cap and some profit sharing a lot of mid to small market times are not making money… At all… It isn’t like football or baseball where the revenues are so massive that the strong can support the weak. NYR is allegedly the only profitable US based team.

    There are some very serious issues they need to sort out based on the increase in player salary, league revenue sharing, the number/locations of viable NHL teams and generating more revenue for the league in general.

  • June 1, 2012 at 11:10 am

    This isn’t real estate, Brad. Location isn’t everything… using Chicago being close to Madison in a bubble works, but putting a long-term deal with what Suter stands to make on the open market into the context of the Blackhawks roster simply isn’t reality. IF the cap goes up to $70.3M, the Hawks would have just enough to match the $7M per that most are assuming Suter will get. With a full blue line already in place, adding that contract would require multiple deals to make sense, and the Hawks would be forced to make them as they were in 2010. To be honest, Suter is a luxury (one helluva luxury at that) which I don’t feel the Blackhawks can, or will, afford this summer.

    Simply: chasing Suter is a pipe dream that will leave a lot of fans depressed if that’s the focus of this summer.

  • June 1, 2012 at 11:13 am

    As fans look forward to potential trades this summer, here’s something to consider (per CapGeek): both Oduya and Montador have modified no-trade clauses on their contracts, Hjalmarsson does not.

  • June 1, 2012 at 12:40 pm

    Tab–I would estimate that Abdelkader and Helm would be back for around $2.5M combined, if even that (they combined for around $1.6M in cap hit last year).”

    I’ll take the over on that by at least $1M These guys are going onto their last contract before UFA and are both semi-important pieces of the team, I’m not saying they’ll each get over $2M, but compare them to Frolik last offseason.

    If the Wings replace Stuart with a similarly $4M-ish D man (and I’m guessing Oduya would have been near the top of their list), then I don’t think they’ll have room for both Suter and Parise. While the wings definitely need to start refreshing with younger players, like Parise, most of their D prospect talent was acquired in the 2010 and 2011 drafts and is years away.

    Despite what the cap would go up under the current CBA, the fact of the matter is that the CBA is expiring and is going to have some big changes. No one is actually predicting that the cap will go up.

  • June 1, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    Even if Abdelkader and Helm get $4M combined, the Wings would have $16M in cap space with 20 signed players. That’s a LOT of spending room for a team that still has really good top-end players under contract next year. And I believe they plan to replace Stuart with Brendan Smith if Suter assumes the 24-25 minute-per-game spot where Lidstrom was last year. If Suter signs w/ Detroit, their blue line would likely read like this:


    Unless they can dump Ian White to upgrade, I don’t see where they need a $4M-ish d-man… they have their Oduya in Ericsson (making $3.25M w/ a ntc for two more years) and still have RFA rights to Kyle Quincey.

  • June 1, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    Tab: I assume you’re so much more in the “know” that the rest of us providing our unqualified commentary. But here’s mine anyway. The Oduya signing feels to me like creating the depth to allow for a trade. I assume Montidor is coming back. Certainly no trade value. Oduya signing frees up Hammer for trade. Add to that the discussion of Bolland as trade piece makes a lot of sense. Team needs to set itself up for now and future. Bolland and Krueger seem to me to be a redundant part. Neither is a long term solution at 2nd line C. Competing for 3rd line C. Mayers is a perfect 4th line C at a low cost. Keeping Bolland stunts Krueger growth, so pick one and trade other. With Bolland and Hammer as trade bait, plus I think they move Frolik for a basket of pucks to reduce cost there, I DO see hawks adding one significant player through trade or FA. I can’t say it’s Suter, but my best guess is that at least one of Hammer or Bolland, maybe both, is gone, and a top 3 D man or #2 line C is added. And in making these changes, we need to accomplish a couple of other things: add a little more size, and add some specialists to the PP and PK. We’ll know the answer about the Suter chase based on them moving one of their salaries during/around the draft.

  • June 1, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    AJ is right moving 2/3 contracts for 1 is tough to get fair value out of players moved Leddy to me needs 1/2 to full year to clear out his mind and build up strength Olsen is a keeper.Hey Q or who ever DONT PUT TOOOO MUCH PRESSURE ON THIS ONE aka Leddy Hammer is worth $ in todays market. But can we upgrade w/ Wideman @ 4ish ?Monty has to be ready if not Hammer not good idea We also need 2 affordables assuming lepisto is gone because of BAD Qing [timing] Does Vandemeer have anything to offer except an older Scott? What about Scott? bring him back or would that be like “We can still be FRIENDS thing? I like him and it seems he was progressing fair. OK my turn @ Suter to Hawks. Hammer goes Fro is kept for playoffs [he needs to learn how to keep head up when shooting AND when to use that speed to HIS advantage] Leddy is Tweener and say good bye to 2nd center thing. If Suter is brought in what are we saying to Keith & Seabs? since you cant he will? OR does egos not have a part in all this. Business decisions are tougher than they appear What about the rookies wanting more $ in 2 years? I dont expect cap to go up much aka more teams in $ trouble My veiw on D is in coaching We dont have a 3 outlet passing system like 2010 Outlets should be up wall long & short w/in zone behind net l/s with front of net as 3rd out let or does the thought of a turn over scare you because of net tender? pun intened aka2 overtimmers

  • June 1, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    Has anyone seen Krugs injury list? cocussions [3] although not serious 1to 8 games this could pose HUUUUge problem .Since we discussing defence if Cory cant get it together in 12/13 are there UFAs next year ?For got to check and dream

  • June 1, 2012 at 3:01 pm

    Scott brings up some good points…Bowman, right now, has too many players to fit all positions, on a team that isn’t good enough to get out of the first round…this presents lots of issues, but also possibilities, and they are through the trade market…in fact, the only way Bowman can proceed into next season is with trades…

    Just look at the forwards alone:

    Stahlberg-Toews-Kane (Way to Soft, with soft DMen behind them)
    Sharp-Kruger-Hossa (I like Kruger, but no way he is a 2nd Centre this year)
    Bickell-Bolland-Shaw (Bolland is WAY TOO expensive & not getting better as 3rd C)
    Hayes-Mayers-Bollig (This is actually the one strong suit of the Hawks, good line)

    Okay, where does that leave the following:

    Frolik (under contract)
    Carcillo (under contract)
    Saad (deserves a shot)
    Ben Smith (absolutely deserves a shot, has proven himself in the playoffs no less)
    Pirri (if still in the organization after the summer, definitely deserves a shot)
    Morin (looked ready 2 years ago, spent last year recovering/proving, he’s ready)
    McNeil (is likely physically and mentally ready)
    Danault (mentally ready, maybe not physically)
    Beach (maybe like Morin, this is his healing, proving year, but played well)

    On our active roster above, who do you replace? Do you give Carcillo a spot over Bollig as the enforcer? Carcillo isn’t an enforcer, he is an agitator…he may stand up for teammates a la Andrew Shaw, but he isn’t going to pummel anyone, like Bollig is capable of. Do you give Frolik a spot, at his hefty price for 2 goals (sans the empty netters, and on again, off again play) over Shaw or Hayes??? That would be crazy…Shaw was one of the top 3 rookies in the entire league last year…Hayes shows he belongs, as he goes to the night, protects teammates, throws his body around, can actually skate and has a nice set of hands. Both Shaw and Hayes HAVE to make the team.

    But if you are Bowman why resign Carcillo? The only one that makes any sense off the active roster for Carcillo is Bollig (who has a nice shot), but as we established, Carcillo is not an enforcer.

    Brandon Saad is absolutely ready for a shot…short of Hossa being delayed on his return from a concussion (very likely) where is the space for Saad? Jeremy Morin and Ben Smith, both had set backs this past year from viscous injuries, they have rebounded and deserve a shot…a big shot at the show…

    What about Brandon Pirri? He has gone as far as he can within the Hawks system…he was a Rockford All Star in his 2nd year there. If he is going to be an NHLer then he is ready as he ever will be…Mark McNeil was drafted as THE MOST NHL READY JR. PHYSICALLY…and we know he has a great mental game…sure you could argue that a year in Rockford won’t hurt him, but he might be ready and deserves a shot…which is similar to Danault, although he might not be physically ready, he screams intelligent hockey player.

    While absolute WASTES of space are definitely gone (see Brunette and Morrison), there are still too many spots taken by guys that can’t get us out of the first round…so, who goes?

    The number one candidate out has to be Bolland…he isn’t getting better…he is far too injury prone and Kruger’s play duplicates a lot of what Bolland does…plus, as a 3rd line checking Centre and a PK centre, he can’t win face-offs with any consistency, and that is KILLING US…

    So who do you trade him for, and what do you add to this deal? Stahlberg isn’t going anywhere and nor should he…if Stahlberg had ANY HANDS he would have scored 45 goals this year, just on glorious chances alone…that is no exaggeration…Stahlberg creates an enormity of scoring chances, plus he has committed to helping on defence…with a little more muscle and mental toughness, he could become Marian Hossa Pt. 2…our majestic royalty (aka the Core) apparently isn’t going anywhere…Bickell shows flashes of being exactly what we need, and with his age and contract, he isn’t going anywhere…we already established that Hayes and Shaw are youngsters that you definitely keep to help the core, long term, so that leaves Kruger and Mayers…Kruger is absolutely a keeper and a favourite of both Q and Bowman so he isn’t going anywhere…and Mayers, just resigned, perhaps wouldn’t have got a contract from anyone else, so there is no market for him…

    Therein lies the dilemma…if the core is untouchable, then you only have Bolland and Hammer that make sense to trade. But what do we get from this deal? If it’s our true #2 Centre, then there is no room for Pirri…

    So, 2+2 always = 4…Bolland, Hammer, Pirri, and a 2nd rounder this year or next, for a #2 centre…a la Ryan Getzlaf…so then the lineup looks like this:

    Stahlberg-Toews-Kane (Kane is the weak link, literally)
    Sharp-Getzlaf-Hossa (Wow, that’s a dynamite line)
    Bickell-Kruger-Shaw (This might be my favourite line, blue chippers)
    Hayes-Mayers-Car Bomb/Bollig

    But this still doesn’t leave room for Brandon Saad, and there must be room for him, and Morin, Smith, McNeil, Beach and Danault don’t get their shot…unless, as we stated, Hossa is slow coming back (say about game 15-20) and Saad is given that window to prove and then you move someone at that point, forcing Morin, Smith, McNeil, Danault and Beach all to develop at Rockford.

    The bottom line is this…we are alright at forward…now, and in the future…Corey Crawford is very likely going to rebound from Sophmore jitters and become a solid 3rd year starter…it is DEFENCE ladies and gentleman where this team MUST get better…and the kicker is this we MUST add 1 DMAN this year that is a true top 3 DMan who can play physical…Tab says it can’t be Suter…I disagree…but whomever it is, this player is crucial…get the right guy, and this team is in store for a long playoff run…get it wrong, and we will be forced into cleaning some of this precious house.

  • June 2, 2012 at 8:27 am

    Can Montador be shipped off to Switzerland just like Huet so we don’t have to count his his contract against the cap. Point being where there is a will there is a way. THe way I see it Bowman is being paid to be creative and get the most possible talent on the team to win it all. Get Suter and lets take a run at this thing.

  • June 2, 2012 at 8:54 am

    I agree Pete…there is a way to create the space…and there is a market around the league for Bolland and Hammer…they can be moved relatively easily.

  • June 2, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    I know those guys would be easy to move (bolly & hammer). But I do not want to trade Bolly, hes way harder to replace. Hammer sure if can get a pf/center, etc. or even just to upgrade Hammer w Suter or any defenseman thats better, and thenjust get something good in return for Hammer. Trade Hammer, prospect (not Saad), pick for top 6 foward. As long as it makes us better where we need it most.

    Same Cap: 64.300
    Those 22 players: 61.433

    Sell Fro for whatever picks we get.

    Put Monty on LTIR.(for now, trade later)(is there a 5or10% luxury during summer?)

    Sign FA Defenseman Suter
    @ 7/7-12yrs (whatever it takes)
    56.350 +7.000=63.350

    Saad in lineup (for second 40games, have Stalls play checkline)

    Line Up (not too bad)



    *if cap goes up 3 to 67.3, then we sign Jokinen/pf/center @3/yr

  • June 2, 2012 at 3:43 pm

    Look, sure you can’t judge Oduya on just one play. But that one play happens to be perfectly emblematic of the man’s performance during the entire series. It was like watching a caterpillar try to fly, or like Brandon Bollig trying to defend a PhD thesis to a bunch of Cambridge professors.

    It is the impression that marks my judgment. If that signing is merely to set up for a trade then fine, but Oduya is less functional than Boynton or Sopel and can’t provide the support we need for a cup run. If you’re not humiliated by that play, then I suppose you’re lucky to have no pride.

    Anyway I’m with Brad on the Suter thing. Let’s make our play now before they take the Hawks off TV again.

  • June 3, 2012 at 9:08 am

    Tab: I’m still troubled by Stan Bowman’s comments at the end of season press conference. It looks like he and Coach Q are not on the same page. Particularly Bowman’s glowing discussion of Kane at center, and how well he played there. I know it’s just my imagination, but I was thinking he had Kane locked up at that position.
    Coach Q obviously likes Frolik and Kruger a lot. I think he might squawk at moving Kruger.
    Question: Do you see ANY chance of the club planning on Kane at center again this year? (assuming he’s on track and not missing part of the season due to some rehab, etc.). That scares me, as I believe in what Eddie O says about Kane needing to be a 150 foot player and not a 200 foot (center) player. I think that #2 center position will have some say in how they move for defensive players….and I’m still confused about that. Your thoughts?

  • June 3, 2012 at 9:15 am

    Tim, with Toews missing time the last TWO seasons for Concussion related symptoms, and the way EVERY team in the league takes unnecessary shots at him, the #2 Centre spot on this team is CRUCIAL…

    Going to the #1 spot if Tazer is injured, the PP, PK…this can’t be Kane…Bowman’s comments that he is the best available at that position are criminal…Kane is playing himself into a one trick pony player…the #2 Centre has to be dynamic…again, this is crucial for us…

  • June 3, 2012 at 11:00 am

    maybe the hawks need to think about splitting up Seabrook and Keith. I personally would like the team make Keith available. To me Keith has only seemed to regress since winning the Norris. I would love to see the Hawks offer Keith and maybe Kruger or Bolland for Shea Weber. As much as I would love to see Keith stay this team hasnt gotten better in the last 2 years. As we watch the playoffs and finals we are seeing the a physical presence is a must. Adding Weber fixes 2 problems: One is lacek of a physical presence and two the power play. If Weber is out of question then look to move Keith and Bolland to pursue Suter or Parise.

  • June 3, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    Reality: the Blackhawks aren’t trading Keith inside the division, and the Preds aren’t trading Shea Weber inside the division. That’s crazy.

    Furthermore, the idea of trading Keith needs to be put back in the file marked “loco” and left there for a long time. He might not have been a Norris finalist last year, but there aren’t many guys in the league that do what he does (especially for the cap hit he has).

  • June 3, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    Keith is a definate keeper controls puck quick & fast. Hammer Bolly goes for Suter Sign Ollie for 2 yrs @3 mil. This gives Mc Neil time to develope. Question If McNeil is the 2nd center doesnt he need a better +/- than -10? Or is OHL tougher than AHL .If no Ollie Sharie is a better answer than Kaner @ center W/Saad or Pirri in Sharps wing. Krug gets third line while Mayers relieves part time. If Ollie is a no go sign Vokoun for 2.5 this would give us a better chance .How much does Ben Smith play into the picture ? He is a little small for the entire season & no offer yet signed

  • June 3, 2012 at 3:51 pm

    Everyone, I think the Hawks need to add a top flight player without giving anybody good up. Thats why I say go for a top line free agent. With the Oduya signing I don’t know if they have the cap space anymore to do that unfortunately unless some salary gets moved off the books. Thats why I asked if Montador could be sent to Switzerland ala Huet to clear off the room. Also if the cap goes up then that could also give us the room. Talon went all in and we won the cup. I think its Bowmans job to decide whether to go “all in” again at this point. A concern I have is how much longer Hossa will be able to play at his current high level. He is 33 right now and I think that is the “winning window” we should be looking at. Anyone have any thoughts on that?

  • June 3, 2012 at 7:09 pm

    Ollie @ 3Vokon @2. 7 Suter @ 6.5 all F/A Cap goes up 67 not 70 per cap geek now We only have space for 2 if Bolly Hammer move We keep all rookies or even trade bait for one big forword/center roll player prefer center to cover injuries Hossa is Married to use now His productivity in 8 playoff games is 0 not good 36 is cut off for him I think. Dont know if he is going to be ready for camp Monty has limited no trade and limits opitions But dont know shipping rates Fro goes to AHL for PATIENTS and work on seeing game slower PSIf Hoss doesnt come back 100% how long can he play until cap hit sets in

  • June 3, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    what is it Keith does that makes him untouchable? He doesnt hit. He doesnt quarterback the power play. He isnt an offensive powerhouse. Yes he can skate and yes he is quick. So what . Noone can say he is an 8 million dollar a year player. As far as trading to Nashville, the preds are rebuilding. Yes Keith is expensive but they want to have a player who is locked in for awhile as opposed to having to negotiate with Weber. Especially with Bolland thrown in. However if not feasible trade Keith to team outside division. Only if the best deal can made.

  • June 4, 2012 at 9:27 am

    Mt bad Hoss has 2 goals 8 points in 7 games 2011 playoffs 0 in 3 this yr

  • June 4, 2012 at 9:30 am

    I think Frolik has some upside. The Hawks gave up on Vrbata and he turned into a really good player for Phoenix. I say stick with Frolik and develop him. Anyone agree with me or disagree.

  • June 4, 2012 at 9:50 am

    Fro in AHL 1yr see comment june 1 Bolly / Hammer dealt for clearing cap space for Suter not trade for him Sign F/A @ center Ollie or trade for better goalie Keep Kieth He may not be worth 8 mill now mayby makeing him untradeable Good point on Weber is he worth 10 mill w/cap @67 for them? they better sign one of them perhaps leaving Suter a mute point. Could be mute any way w/ Bowman Bowman SR @ that other place built it right win cups and they will come Meaning 33 + vets for roll players Does anyone have insight into B Smith health / contract talks ?

  • June 4, 2012 at 12:25 pm

    Vokoun out of my picture sings with Pit 4 mill for two years If Radalov goes to Rangers next headline might be he bolts back to KHL CAN HE HANDLE THAT PRESSURE of NY?

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