NHL Trade Rumors: Chicago Blackhawks Smart to Pursue Defenseman Matt Carle

Patrick Clarke@@_Pat_ClarkeCorrespondent IFebruary 26, 2012

The Chicago Blackhawks are smart to pursue Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Matt Carle before Monday's NHL trade deadline.

According to TrueHockey.com's Andy Strickland on Twitter, the Hawks are set on adding a proven defenseman in Carle or possibly Dallas' Sheldon Souray.

#Blackhawks hoping to land an experienced D-man... Matt Carle and Sheldon Souray a few names being kicked around #Blackhawks #NHL

— Andy Strickland (@andystrickland) February 26, 2012

Both are experienced, but Carle is clearly the better option, considering he is eight years younger than Souray and having a much better season statistically.

Carle has 27 assists in 61 games for the Flyers this season; the Flyers are plus-4 with him on the ice. 

According to ESPN's Alvin Chang, "the Hawks aren't going to be giving away any NHL players in their deals, so it's likely they will send back picks or prospects."

That being said, Chicago will have to cough up a decent pick in order to pry Carle away from Philly, but it would certainly be worth it.

As of this past weekend, the Blackhawks were sixth in the Western Conference standings and in the midst of a two-game losing streak. 

Chicago ranks 24th in the NHL in goals allowed and 27th in league in penalty percentage. Carle's underrated presence in the back would bolster the Hawks' lineup without a doubt and help their chances as the playoffs near.

Goal scoring is not an issue for Chicago with elite offensive talent like Marian Hossa, Jonathan Toews and Patrick Sharp all finding the back of the net at a furious pace in 2011-12, so finding a way to make Matt Carle a Blackhawk should be the front office's top priority as the trade deadline approaches.

 

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