NHL Rumors: Blackhawks big decisions; and Jack Eichel speculation continues

Chicago Blackhawks rumors
Jan 18, 2020; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Chicago Blackhawks center Jonathan Toews (19) celebrates with right wing Patrick Kane (88) after scoring a goal against the Toronto Maple Leafs during the first period at Scotiabank Arena. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

The Blackhawks made a lot of big changes and spent significant cap space in the process. Seth Jones and Marc-Andre Fleury were supposed to help Chicago turn things around this season. So fare, no luck.

Even with the return of Jonathan Toews they have yet to win a single game this season going 0-5-1. It makes you wonder how long Jeremy Colliton will be behind Hawks bench? He’s starting his 4th season and his record of 86-88-25 isn’t cutting it.

Regardless of a coaching change or even firing President and GM Stan Bowman, when does Chicago bite the proverbial bullet and rebuild?

NHL Rumors: Will the Hawks eventually trade Toews or Kane?

Patrick Kane is 32 years old and has another year left on a deal that pays him $10.5 million. He currently has 5 points in 5 games to go with 1093 career points in 1034 games played. Without a doubt he carries top 10 name recognition, and would be the player that brings back the biggest return.

However, rebuild or not the Hawks still need to sell tickets which should keep him in Chicago.

Toews, the Hawks captain is 33 years-old and still has plenty to offer teams looking to get over the hump. He also has one year remaining on a deal that comes with a cap hit of $10.5 million. Toews also controls his own destiny with a full no move clause. If the Hawks move him, they will need to retain salary and also get his blessing. A tough proposition, but it all has to start with if he wants to go.

Considering the state of the Hawks, Toews could be open to moving to a contender at the trade deadline for a chance to win another Cup. It will be interesting to see where he could land but Vegas and New York could be possible depending on how much salary is retained.

Latest Jack Eichel speculation

nhl trade rumors
Oct 6, 2018; Buffalo, NY, USA; Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel (9) reacts before a game against the New York Rangers at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Elliotte Friedman was a guest on Sportnet’s The Jeff Marek Show and started to discuss possible trade destinations again for Jack Eichel. Here’s a list of teams mentioned.

  • Avalanche: Kicked tires, nothing close
  • Blue Jackets: Same as Avs
  • Bruins: Doesn’t think Bruins can offer Sabres what they want
  • Ducks: Haven’t heard much recently, quiet
  • Flames: Did due diligence, could be a player
  • Golden Knights: Need help now, Eichel won’t be ready due to surgery
  • Hurricanes: May be an interesting team
  • Kraken: Haven’t heard if they are really interested but possible
  • Rangers: Extending Zibanejad ends it unless Sabres willing to retain significant salary
  • Wild: No cap space

Eichel, the #2 overall pick in the 2015 NHL Draft last played a game on March 7th, against the Islanders. He was injured in that contest and later diagnosed with a herniated disc in his neck.

The saga has been drawn out for quite some time. Whispers of him wanting out of Buffalo actually started at the end of the 2019-20 season but it reached a fever pitch after the injury.

According to Elliotte Friedman, Eichel will likely be filing a grievance this week against the Sabres.

“I think we are getting to the point where the grievance could come down to force a kind of move,” he said on Saturday’s 32 Thoughts segment. “I think that sometime in the next week, two weeks max, the sense I’m getting is if there’s not a trade or an agreement between the Sabres and the Eichels on his medical path, I think you’re going to see Eichel file a grievance to see if he can move things along.”