The Chicago Blackhawks struggled last spring, and after losing Artemi Panarin, but most especially defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson, fans might be slightly nervous for the start of the season.
Hjalmarsson was a very important stayat home defenseman for the Blackhawks, and something will need to be done to improve the once very menacing roster.
However, Chicago Tribune's Chris Hine reassured fans on Friday, stating that the Hawks should acquire a defenseman to shore up the blueline depth. Not only did general manager Stan Bowman offer a PTO to free agent Cody Franson, but Hine believes that "the most significant loves will come once sidelined winger Marian Hossa is placed on long-term injury reserve once the season begins."
"Once they do that, they will have cap space to use the rest of the season. I think general manager Stan Bowman will let the team play out the first weeks and months of the season to get a good evaluation of where the team’s strengths and weaknesses are. Then he will make a deal," he adds.
The Hawks are thin on the blue line and a significant trade is meant to happen.