David VanHousen
Membre depuis
11 mars 2023
Équipe favorite
Blackhawks de Chicago
Deuxième équipe favorite
Kraken de Seattle
Messages dans les forums
Messages par jour
Forum: Armchair-GM27 mai 2023 à 15 h 45
Forum: Chicago Blackhawks22 avr. 2023 à 12 h 29
<div class="quote"><div class="quote_t">Quoting: <b>Tyler_A10</b></div><div>For my money, this is going to be the most comprehensive Blackhawks season review at all levels of the franchise you will find, from the moves before the season, to the moves in season, and the players and prospects who stood out, over-performed, underperformed, and are either in or out for next season.

The lead up:
The Blackhawks were coming off arguably the most disappointing season of the last 20 years. After acquiring star players like Seth Jones, Marc-Andre Fleury, and Jake McCabe, keeping most of the rest of the group who over-performed in the 2021 shortened season, and with Jonathan Toews returning from his illness that caused him to miss all of that shortened season, the Hawks were looking to push for the playoffs after a few years away to give Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane a few more runs for the Stanley Cup. This… did not happen. The Blackhawks were dreadful to start the season, and then the Jenner and Block report regarding Brad Aldrich, Kyle Beach, and the 2010 Blackhawks Cup win came out, which made everyone feel icky about the franchise. Stan Bowman resigned and Jeremy Colliton was soon fired after the Blackhawks started the year 1-9-2. Despite this, the Hawks were quietly respectable until the midway point as they sat on 15-18-5 on January 15th, 7 points out of a playoff spot and with no first round pick. Hawks could’ve made a push for a playoff spot like Edmonton did, a team who only had 3 more points than us on that day; but while they made a coaching change and got Evander Kane, the Hawks had no permanent GM and no permanent head coach, and the marginal winning could not last. Soon after, Rocky Wirtz lost his **** in a town hall on Blackhawks reporters Mark Lazerus and Phillip Thompson concerning Kyle Beach related questions, despite the questions being far from disrespectful. So by March 1st, when the Hawks made Kyle Davidson the permanent general manager, they were now 17 points out of a playoff spot, and clearly had no basis to claim this team was capable of a playoff push. So, Davidson started dealing in the most unexpected of ways. He trades Brandon Hagel, my favorite Hawks player at the time, to Tampa with 2 4ths for 2 1sts, Taylor Raddysh and Boris Katchouk. (Side note: this was also a week after my girlfriend of 4 1/2 years broke up with me, so I had a pretty awful March 2022 to say the least). Davidson would then only make 2 more trades by moving Ryan Carpenter to Calgary for a 5th and Marc-Andre Fleury to Minnesota for a 2nd that could’ve become a 1st, but didn’t. This was despite pending RFAs Dylan Strome and Dominik Kubalik being rumored to have interest as well as both of them having at least some level of prestige.
The Hawks ended the season as one of the worst teams in the league. Their dread was exemplified most by a 6-5 regulation loss to the Sabres after leading 4-0; as the game winning goal came with 20 seconds left from a rebound off the back wall that hit Lankinens skate and went in. Lankinen then proceeded to break his stick on the goalpost on attempt three after failing to do so the first two swings. The Blackhawks pick, which was owned by the Blue Jackets ended up as the 6th pick, a bit of a lifeline as the Hawks had a poison pill top 2 protection on that pick which would’ve taken away the Hawks 2023 1st instead.
A complete nightmare of a season at all levels of the franchise that’s so bad, the best thing about it was losing the draft lottery.

The offseason:
Oh boy, here we go. First thing is draft day, where the Hawks make a major splash for the 2nd straight year, first it was acquiring Seth Jones, now it was trading away Alex Debrincat to Ottawa in exchange for the 7th overall pick, as well as a 2nd and a 3rd. I want to say that I think at the time, we gave this trade way too much hate. Trading a top line winger for a top 10 pick actually does make sense value-wise; since the expectation is that you should get a top line player with that top 10 pick. The picks ended up being Kevin Korchinski, Paul Ludwinski, and the 3rd is in 2024. Then, the Hawks traded Kirby Dach, who was only 21 years old, to the Canadiens in exchange for the 13th pick and an early 3rd. While Dach has performed better than he ever did in Chicago, the Hawks ran the risk if they kept him that his value continued to plummet, and thus they chose to cash out before it was too late. And with the picks the Hawks took Frank Nazar and Gavin Hayes. Then we made another move which was trading our 2nd round pick to Toronto in exchange for their 1st round pick and Petr Mrazek. We used the first to select Sam Rinzel. Last trade made was sending our 6th to Pittsburgh for college prospect Liam Gorman. We would then use the rest of the draft to select Ryan Greene (2nd from Fleury trade), Samuel Savoie (3rd from Janmark trade), Aidan Thompson (3rd from Zadorov trade), Dominic James (6th from Seth Jones trade), Nils Juntorp (6th trading our 2023 6th) and Riku Tohila (own 7th rounder).
We let many players walk in free agency including Dylan Strome, Dominik Kubalik, Kevin Lankinen, Calvin De Haan, and Erik Gustafsson. We bought out both Henrik Borgstrom and Brett Connolly. And we turned around by signing Max Domi, Andreas Athanasiou, Jack Johnson, Alex Stalock, and Colin Blackwell.

The preseason:
As we entered the preseason, the hawks were obviously expected to be one of the worst teams in the league. The youngest NHL regular was a 23 year old Philipp Kurashev, and outside of an aging Toews and Kane, plus much derided Seth Jones, the Hawks had very little to look forward too. A few days before the season, the Hawks traded Riley Stillman to Vancouver in exchange for Jason Dickinson and a 2nd round pick. And the Hawks lined up the majority of the opening of the season with this type of group as their regular lineup.

T. Johnson-Toews-Raddysh
Blackwell-Khaira-R. Johnson

J. Johnson-S. Jones
McCabe-C. Jones


Now obviously there were several changes that occurred. McCabe started the year injured. Tyler Johnson, Jarred Tinordi, Alex Stalock, and Jujhar Khaira all missed significant time. McCabe was eventually moved to the top pair where he should’ve always been, Roos played a lot to start the year, and Isaak Phillips got in occasionally as we approached the midway point. But this might be one of the worst lineups I’ve ever seen an NHL team regularly ice, especially considering that they did not have significant injuries to stars like Columbus did with Werenski.

Hawks started hot for the first 2 weeks, then reality kicked in. Casey Cizikas ran over Alex Stalock, Arvid Soderblom was rushed into the NHL starter role, and the hawks lost 17 of 18 in November and December. It got bad. Luckily a few players were performing really well and it made their trade markets good.

Max Domi was scoring at rates we hadn’t seen in years and he was dealt with AHL goalie Dylan Wells to Dallas for a 2nd and Anton Khudobin to match salary.

Jake McCabe was arguably our best player and the turnaround of Seth Jones season was largely to do with Jake McCabe being his defense partner rather than Jack Johnson. He was traded with Sam Lafferty, who also performed above expectations, and 2 5ths to Toronto for Joey Anderson, Pavel Gogolev, a future 1st and a future 2nd.

Jack Johnson was statistically the worst defenseman in the NHL during his time in Chicago, but Colorado wanted his leadership back so he was moved for Andreas Englund in a deal that made sense for everyone but was mostly inconsequential.

Most of the other deals were really small involving Austin Wagner and Anders Bjork being dealt to Chicago.

But the big one was the nail in the coffin to what the hawks used to be. While Jonathan Toews was unable to be traded due to his previous health issues flaring up again, Patrick Kane was healthy, kinda sorta. He’d been dealing with a minor hip issue which he’d played through for almost 3 years now. On top of this, his numbers were significantly worse than previous seasons and he seemed like he was struggling to care. When the New York Rangers, an oft-rumored destination for Kane, opted to trade for Vladimir Tarasenko, it seemed like they were off the market for Kane; something he made clear to be known he was frustrated about. However, after Kane had a vintage week of games, putting up 10 points in 4 games, the Hawks were able to convince the Rangers to get a trade done; so Kane was dealt to the Rangers for a 2nd that can become a 1st, and a 4th round pick as well. Underwhelming return for a legend, but considering his limited choice destinations and struggles of late, it’s not quite as bad as it was rumored to be.

This firesale lead to the callups of Lukas Reichel, Alex Vlasic, and Cole Guttman. Reichel played amazing, as did Vlasic. Guttman looked very impressive, but unfortunately got injured and missed the rest of the season.

With all of this, the hawks finished with 59 points and 3rd last in the league. With lottery odds of 11.5% to win the first pick.

Now that’s a lot of preface, next up is my opinion on which offseason moves should be done, starting with outgoing free agents.

Outgoing UFAs:
Andreas Athanasiou (Keep)
Athanasiou might’ve tore it up to end to season with 18 points in 21 games since the trade deadline, but that has plenty more to do with him being the only skilled guy on the roster besides Lukas Reichel. Despite this, the Blackhawks are going to be bad next season once again, and if AA can play next year like he did to end this season, then it’s worth taking a chance to see if he can maximize his trade value just like how Domi did.

Andreas Englund (Walk)
It’s a choice between Andreas Englund and Caleb Jones for which defenseman is kept and I will be choosing Caleb Jones due to age and how he performed to end the season. Englund performed alright, but we have too many young defenseman prospects to accomodate both Englund and Caleb in the NHL. Plus, Englund is older and missed some gametime to prove himself.

Jujhar Khaira (Walk)
A defensively responsible 4th line forward who will likely sign a new contract with a playoff team who needs to add one of those. Good player, definitely an NHLer, just likely to move to a different team.

Anton Khudobin (Walk)
Khudobin will probably retire. He’s lost a step or six in the last 3 years since being the starter on a cup finals team in the bubble. Now he’s a 3rd string goalie in the AHL. I expect he will retire or be KHL bound, but he won’t be here next year.

Buddy Robinson (Walk)
Played the entire year in the AHL and didn’t do enough to earn a role in Rockfords top 6. If that happens, you’ve gotta go.

Alex Stalock (Walk)
Yes, Alex Stalock has played well this season. But he’s always injured and he’s unreliable when we’re trying to stick to a development path for young goaltenders behind him in the depth chart. I simply think the hawks need to move forward with other options.

Jonathan Toews (Walk/Retire)
I’m not sure what Toews will do, but we already know it won’t be signing a new contract with the Blackhawks. He’s obviously a franchise icon, but with his health problems and age, the best scenario is either that he opts to retire, or signs a contract with another team where he can compete for another championship. Glad he got the opportunity to get the sendoff he deserved at game 82, including getting his goal.

Andy Welinski (Walk)
A guy we got in the Patrick Kane trade, but he’s just an AHL defenseman who will likely find a different team elsewhere next. Clearly inconsequential.

Outgoing RFAs:
Joey Anderson (Keep)
A guy we got in the Jake McCabe trade, I view Anderson similarly to Anders Bjork, but he doesn’t have the massive QO that Bjork does. He’s got a QO of 800k and I think the Hawks would like to give him more of a sample size to prove his worth as a bottom 6 forward. He’s also with Rockford for the playoffs right now.

Anders Bjork (Walk)
Despite putting up points in 13 games for us to end the season, he has a QO of 1.8M. What I anticipate happening is we decide to not give him the QO, then we could give him a 2 way contract. Could be a good 13th forward next year, but we have too many of those guys already.

Hunter Drew (Walk)
Pretty simple here. AHL enforcer we got in the Josiah Slavin trade, might not even crack the Icehogs playoff lineup. Slavin disappointed this year, but Drew has very low upside.

Jakub Galvas (Trade)
This is the hardest one in the entire list. Jakub Galvas is a player I’ve always wanted to like a lot, but unfortunately, he didn’t shine in the AHL nearly as much as I had hoped. Next year, the Icehogs are likely adding Kaiser, Del Mastro, and Nolan Allan, and the spaces for Jakub Galvas will dry up completely. For me, I’m having his RFA rights getting traded to the Capitals in exchange for a conditional 7th that conveys depending on NHL GP.

Maxim Golod (Walk)
Guy we got for Dylan Sikura which also gave us Rocco Grimaldi for the Icehogs playoff run. Like Hillis, pretty much an ECHLer, but I could see him staying in Indy since he played junior hockey with Chad Yetman.

Cameron Hillis (Walk)
Guy we got in the Nicolas Beaudin trade. Looks completely out of his depth in the AHL and likely will find an AHL/ECHL contract elsewhere. While Beaudin had a good AHL season, he still doesn’t look like someone to become an NHL impact so I wouldn’t be too worried about the outcome of this trade.

Caleb Jones (Keep)
If you asked me 3 months ago, this answer was the complete opposite. But I’ve actually been quite impressed with how Caleb has played since the trade deadline. I think 1 more year to prove himself is okay, maybe he becomes a trade deadline option for contenders next spring and we can get like a 3rd round pick back.

Philipp Kurashev (Keep, for now)
I’m not really all too impressed with how Kurashev played this season. His play was rather average most of the year when he was getting top 6 minutes regularly and he really struggles to grasp the defensive responsibilities of the NHL. I think you give him a 2 year contract to see if he can develop legitimate consistency with his impressive skill, but time is running up before other guys come to take his spot.

Ian Mitchell (Walk)
I have never been impressed with Ian Mitchell and this season was absolutely no different. I do not see enough ability in either the offense or defensive zone at the NHL level to warrant keeping him around. The only thing he’s really good at is his breakout passing, but that usually comes with mobility and he gets turnstiled too often. I don’t want him back, I hope he isn’t back, he can go somewhere else and try and figure it out there but we need to move on.

Alec Regula (Keep)
Rockford is really lacking in right shot defenseman, which is the main reason he’s given another shot. This is Regulas last chance to prove he can crack the NHL and considering he didn’t play well in his NHL games, nor wildly stand out in his AHL games, I’m not expecting that.

Arvid Soderblom (Keep)
Obviously Soderblom will stay. Despite some difficult stretches of the season, he’s played better as of the last few months in the AHL and showed in his first few NHL games what he’s capable of. Could be an NHL backup next season, regardless I think he gets a 1-2 year deal to continue his development.

Austin Wagner (Walk)
Has actually dealt with some nasty adversity as of late involving infections. Despite that, I think he gets an NHL deal elsewhere or a PTO, not consequential to the Blackhawks.

Buyouts: Petr Mrazek
I have the Hawks bringing in a different #1 goalie so I think they could buy out Petr Mrazek. Unfortunately his health is not reliable enough to guarantee that Soderbloms development plan is followed, and that must be the priority.

Expiring draft rights/ELC signings:
Both Stanislav Demin and Jake Wise have rights that expire in August since they’re both leaving college. I don’t expect either to sign NHL deals, but I do think Jake Wise could sign a contract with the Icehogs.

Samuel Savoie: After a fantastic season in the QMJHL, I expect Savoie to sign an ELC when his QMJHL playoff run finishes. Expectation is he spends another year in the QMJHL, hopefully can crack the world Junior team, and will eventually show his worth in the NHL in a few years. He’s definitely one to watch in the preseason next year to see if the strides that were made in his offensive game translate to NHL preseason.

That’s it for contracts, let’s talk trades.
I’ve already discussed the move to deal Jakub Galvas. Next I’ll discuss the Josh Bailey trade. There’s a few important parts to this trade.
1. Josh Bailey has 1 year left on his deal
2. He had an awful season and is getting scratched for playoff games with the Islanders.
3. The Blackhawks need to reach the salary floor
4. Josh Bailey doesn’t have any trade protection in his contract.
Because of this and Bailey being one of the few obvious bad contracts that hasn’t already been traded to a rebuilding team, I have the Hawks getting him with a 2nd and 5th for a 7th. Fair value in my opinion especially compared to the Zaitsev or Tyler Johnson trades. Islanders have been willing to deal picks to remove bad contracts in the past, and this allows them to use the money on additions to their roster.

Next: Free Agents

Semyon Varlamov: Varlamov is the perfect guy for the Blackhawks to bring in to help mentor Arvid Soderblom and give him the chance to learn in the NHL without being fed to the damn wolves.

Max Domi: yes, I think Domi is back. He seems to be a huge fan of Luke Richardson, and despite being a thug on the ice who likes to rag doll people, he still had his best season in a while with us and I think his priority will be to come back.

Alex Killorn: This one is a bit more wishful thinking and will obviously first depend on if he gets a contract he thinks is warranted from the Lightning, but I think that he’d be a great fit for what we’re trying to do (even moreso if we end up with Bedard, but I haven’t factored the lottery into this ACGM). He’s physical, brings a ton of leadership and pedigree to the dressing room, and is also a really good player that young guys will want to follow and learn from.</div></div>

Thank you so much for making this. It is useful to know this kind of thing.