Blackhawks sign trio of mid-tier forwards to help get them through start of rebuild
The Chicago Blackhawks are in full tank mode with just a few pieces left to depart at some time within the next calendar year. As lots of money has been sent out, they still have to worry about hitting the cap floor. Though it would be both exciting and hard to watch a full team of young players and rookies go out there and gain NHL experience, they have very low AAVs (average annual value) on their contracts and that won’t help the Blackhawks reach the cap floor of $61 million in 2022-23.
The Blackhawks brought in Max Domi and Andreas Athanasiou on one year deals worth $3 million each and Colin Blackwell on for two years at $1.2 million AAV. The first two names make a ton of sense considering they will be able to easily be flipped at the deadline for more assets from a contender and they aren’t too expensive to afford for said teams.
A look at what the forwards will provide the Blackhawks
Domi was traded last season at the deadline and there is very little chance he remains with the Blackhawks through the season unless he’s injured. He had his best offensive season last year since 2018-19 when he set career highs in goals and points. As he can also play a physical game and has experience, it will be a help to the Blackhawks’ younger players who are just entering the league.
Athanasiou is a former 30 goal scorer but has struggled with injuries over the past few seasons. He will provide offense for the Blackhawks, but not enough to change their fortunes as their goal is to get the best chance at number one pick in 2023.
Blackwell is a hard-working energy forward who is good in a bottom-six role. He is a bit older even though he lacks a ton of NHL experience. But he is more than just a rental. This player should at least stick around this season and fill a hole while possibly being an asset to move in his final season.
The Blackhawks are just trying to get through the next season, so in no way are any of these three signings for the term and money a bad move.
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