The Chicago Blackhawks have been perennial buyers at the trade deadline for years, always looking to bolster the roster for a long playoff run. This year the Blackhawks are on pace for one of their worst seasons in the Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews era and will certainly miss the playoffs.
The Blackhawks need to be sellers at the trade deadline, clearly this roster doesn’t bring much to the table.
Recently Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman joined the Blackhawks pregame show and talked about the plan for the trade deadline:
“Some of these young guys, we’re expecting them to take that next step. Bringing someone in to bump them out of the lineup doesn’t make sense right now. I wouldn’t expect us to be in that rental mode, where you’re bringing in a veteran player. That’s the one thing that’s tough: you take someone’s spot who’s been here all year. That’s not the way we’re going to head.”
Bowman and company have no excuse to not be sellers at the trade deadline on February 26th. The Blackhawks now have a rare opportunity to replenish their farm system after years of trading away prospects and draft picks to add depth to the roster for the playoffs.
Obviously, the Blackhawks don’t need to blow it up at the trade deadline, but sitting on their hands isn’t the smartest strategy either. I’d like to think that the Blackhawks will try what Tampa Bay and Boston did to reshape their team by trading away players that didn’t belong to the core for draft picks and young talent.
Possible players the Blackhawks can trade at the deadline include Anisimov, Wingels, Kempny, Hartman, Bouma, and Oesterle. Of the six players named, Anisimov and Wingels have the most value and can bring the Blackhawks some nice draft picks and prospects.
Anisimov has a decent contract and can be a great addition for a playoff team looking for more strength down the middle. If the Blackhawks can get a decent prospect on defense or some picks in the early rounds of this year’s draft I think it would be worth it.
Wingels would help any teams looking to add a bottom line winger that can be a utility type player. I think a reasonable return would be a fourth or fifth round draft pick.
Hopefully, the Blackhawks realize that this season is far from being saved and take a chance to bring more prospects into the fold.