Chris Chelios Possibly Returning to Chicago?

Michael WagnerSenior Analyst IAugust 26, 2008

Many Blackhawks fans remember Chris Chelios as the captain and face of the franchise during the 1990s.

Other Blackhawks fans view Chelios as a "Traitor of the Indian" due to his departure from Chicago to the rival Detroit Red Wings.

Chelios is a Chicago native and has said that he would love to come back to Chicago. Recently he was interviewed by the Chicago Tribune and addressed his possible return to Chicago to finish his playing career or even after his career is over.

"You don't want to hurt anyone's feelings," Chelios told the Tribune. "I found a new home in Detroit, but Chicago is always going to be home. My parents still live here, and I intend on coming back home here some day and spending the rest of my days here, whether it's as a player or somehow being involved with the Blackhawks.

"Hopefully I don't have to look ahead that far and just worry about playing now."

There are a few problems that would arise with the return of Chelios to the Chicago Blackhawks. Namely, the Blackhawks have no cap room this season while they do have a plethora of talented young defense men in the organization.

The only reason I could see Chelios coming back to Chicago is if he were to come back in 2009-2010. The cap issues will have sorted themselves out by then, but there will still be a ton of talented defense men getting pushed back if Chelios were to return. 

Chelios coming back to Chicago for his last go around would not be a terrible thing for the Blackhawks because he is a great veteran leader who can still contribute on a nightly basis. He would probably be a third line defender so you would not expect a ton of production, but his locker room presence would be far more important.

If Chelios does not finish his playing career in Chicago I guarantee he will be back with the Blackhawks in the front office or with the team in some other capacity. Chicago is his home and hockey is his life so a reunion with the Chicago Blackhawks seems very likely. 

P.S. Cheli, I still love you.