Chicago Blackhawks: 5 Free Agents That Stan Bowman Should Go After
The Chicago Blackhawks need to make a move come free agency.
GM Stan Bowman's job will be on the line for how he addresses the needs of this Blackhawks roster.
But just who can the Blackhawks afford to get?
With the cap going up to $70 million for the upcoming season, it will allow Bowman the necessary cap space to sign a big free agent. With a few trades, he will be able to pick up a few big names during free agency.
A few defensemen and even another scrappy power forward will go a long way in helping the Blackhawks achieve their dreams of hoisting the Stanley Cup through the streets of Chicago once again.
These are the top five free agents that Stan Bowman should go after during free agency.
Two Kanes are always better than one right?
Winnipeg Jet's star forward Evander Kane has stated that he doesn't want to negotiate a new contract and will instead look at free agency.
This can only bode well for the Blackhawks.
Kane has been an absolute star in his first three years in the NHL posting over 63 goals and 63 assists. While his numbers may not be as high as some would come to expect you have to remember that Kane is only 20 years old.
The kid possesses a talent that could one day make him one of the elite snipers of the NHL.
Kane will undoubtedly be asking for a large contract somewhere in the $4 million to $5 million cap range.
Of course going after Kane will mean that the Blackhawks will ignore the pressing issue of defense and goaltending.
But another offensive star never hurts.
Imagine the Blackhawks with Jaromir Jagr on the right wing with Jonathan Toews and Patrick Sharp.
It's a very real possibility that the Blackhawks will look at Jagr come free agency. Jagr has stated that he will test the free market waters and see what he can get at the ripe old age of 40.
While Jagr may be overlooked because of his age, he still can provide his share of assists and goals for at least one more season. He put up 54 points in in 73 games last season with the Philadelphia Flyers—pretty good for an "old" man.
Jagr has shown that he is a team player willing to do what it takes to win games. Jagr is a leader; he is what the Blackhawks need in order to get the rest of the players ready to play every game.
But will the Blackhawks go after the one-year contract in order to fill some needs up front? Most likely not Bowman's top priority, but definitely something to look at come free agency.
Pavel Kubina will be a free agent come July 1, and the Blackhawks might have to look at him to fill a roster spot on the blue line.
Kubina is not an offensively-minded player, but he is a great stay-at-home defenseman that can stand up an opponent at the blue line.
The Blackhawks could use Kubina on their third or second line defensive pairing and to bolster the penalty kill that was terrible last season.
Nashville defenseman Ryan Suter will be one of the top prizes come July 1, and the Blackhawks could use his services.
Suter has made it clear that he wants to test free agency and will not be back in Nashville. Good news for the Blackhawks as it was unlikely that Nashville would have traded within their own division.
Suter has been a star defenseman in his seven years with the Predators putting up over 396 points.
With the Blackhawks glaring need for another top defenseman Suter would fit in perfectly with their puck-possession game plan.
The only question is how many teams will be asking for Suter and what will his price be?
With only so much cap space to work with Bowman may need to out-spend other potential suitors in order to get Suter. Which would mean that Niklas Hjalmarsson will have to be traded in order to open up cap space.
Is Zach Parise to the Blackhawks really that much of a pipe dream?
Both the Devils and Parise have made it clear that they would like to continue working together.
Unless he wants to take a major downgrade in his next contract Parise will be on another team come next season.
The question is will the Blackhawks go after Parise?
His cap hit is expected to be over $6 million a season which will cause the Blackhawks to ignore their defensive problems. But on the plus side he brings some more leadership and offensive skill to the roster.
The left wing would be a nice addition though. A line of Parise, Toews and Kane could already be seen as one of the top lines in the NHL.
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