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Member Since
Jul 28, 2019
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Chicago Blackhawks
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Forum: Armchair-GMDec 4, 2020 at 5:58
Forum: Armchair-GMOct 30, 2020 at 1:10
Let’s examine a rebuild three years ago. I assume you are suggesting the rebuild occur in the 2017-18 season (Hawks had a 33-39-10 record) The previous season the Hawks had home ice advantage in the Western Conference. They were swept by the Predators. Clearly from that series, team speed (especially defense) was an issue.

I recall reading that Bowman and Quenneville were very outspoken about the sweep, but with a 1st place finish in the west, were the Blackhawks broken? I think most people would say no. It was in the off season that Panarin & Hjalmarsson we’re moved. Reviewing those trades, there was no cap savings. It is clear that resigning both players was not going to get done, so movement was the alternative.

There is a majority of Hawk fans on this site who vehemently detest both trades, and could be viewed as the beginning of the end. Hindsight always makes for better GM’s.
At the time, I understood the rationale for making the trades. Murphy for Hjalmarsson has been a good trade for Chicago. Panarin for Saad, well, mmmmm .... maybe not.

The first round exit was still a deep wound. Chicago was hosting the draft. It is my opinion, Bowman reacted emotionally to the playoff defeat and made these moves. This not criticism here. Again hindsight is king. If Chicago were “thinking” rebuilt ( and why would they be ... that season) then optimally trading Panarin would come at the TDL a year later, when his contract was expiring to maximize assets returning to the club.

The 2017-18 was the year Crawford missed the second half of the season with his concussion issues. Prior to the injury, Crawford was rock steady in net, 16-9-2, .929 save percentage and a respectable 2.27 G.A.A. The Hawks crashed when they lost him.

I think clearly the organization’s commitment to a rebuild was not pressed due to what could be considered two freak circumstances. #1. A first seed team is swept in the playoffs by an eight seed team. Not pleasant, but playoff fluke happens. The team bounces back the following season. No need for alarm. It can be compounded as Nashville had their run that year and were a Stanley Cup finalist. The view at the season end .. The Hawks lose to a good club.

#2. Our starting goaltender is injured long term and we don’t have the depth to be competitive.

Here was the evidence that the Hawks were no longer a contender, and theopportunity to focus on a rebuild. The following year Cam Ward was signed as stop gap should Crawford’s injury persists. Last year, the Blackhawks committed $11 M of their cap to goaltending, and although Crawford & Lehner were stellar, it did not bring the team
any close to being competitive.

Resolve. The team needs an infusion of younger, hungrier players. The core remains to provided the leadership ... “to past the mantle so to speak”.
Forum: Armchair-GMOct 28, 2020 at 6:20
Forum: Armchair-GMOct 8, 2020 at 4:03
<div class="quote"><div class="quote_t">Quoting: <b>Unbiased_Hawks_Fan</b></div><div>As sad as I am about Crawford. We should honestly be excited about our young goalies. I mean, aren't supposed to be excited for Lankinen and Delia? Weren't we supposed to believe that one day they could hold the mantle. I still think the hawks pursue a starting goalie this offseason tho. I also think Bowman gets too much hate, but apparently I'm the only Hawks fan that thinks that.</div></div>

... thus it can’t be called sport without the legion of fans who have the rite to express their opinion about what a manager did or didn’t do. What sometimes fans forget is the “fan” has limited information about a decision, and emotion which can rule the head.

I waited 49 years to watch this franchise become champions, and to be fortunate to watch two more championships was a privileged. I have seen some pretty pitiful clubs along this journey, and the current roster is light years ahead of those horrible clubs.

What I have seen differently over this last decade is this franchise has created a culture of winning. If you aren’t good enough to qualify for post season, then changes must be made. And sometimes changes are not popular but still need to get done.

Oh my God! The team hasn’t played one game, and so many have already doomed the season. And what if they get off to a slow start? So what? This team needs to continue its youth movement. The New York Rangers are the new model for today’s NHL.

There is much to be excited about this club. Can they realistically compete for the cup? Hell no. Could anybody say yes in back in 2007or 2008?

The NHL is the best professional league for parity. It is damn difficult to repeat as Stanley Cup finalists, yet be champions. Just ask the Blues &amp; the Bruins? The Hawks made it to the Conference final, five times in seven years. For me, that is a the dynasty. Hawks fans relish that feat.