As the offseason goes on, Ovi is still shitfaced, the summer heats up and so do the rumors. With free agency right around the corner starting July 1st, everybody is losing their minds about where these star studded players will play next year. This free agent class has to have some of the biggest names in recent memory. With players like James Van Reimsdyk, Rick Nash, Paul Stastny, James Neal and last but definitely not least John Tavares this offseason should be a wild one. Now that’s only a few of the guys on the list, and to be quite honest with you I don’t see the Hawks taking a run at any of them simply because they can’t afford it.
But that doesn’t mean that the Hawks can’t make a splash this offseason. There is plenty of talent out there at a price they can manage. Here’s a list (in no specific order) of players I think the Hawks should pick up and why.
John Moore – Defense
The 27 year old defenseman from New Jersey would be a really nice addition to a blue line that was a fuckin circus last year. With last years cap hit if $1.67 million, he’s affordable. He’s a stay at home defenseman that also has slick feet which would take some pressure off of Keith and Seabrook.
Micheal Grabner – Forward
Another player from New Jersey but a forward. Grabner is without a doubt one of the fastest players in the league and I think he’d fit perfectly in the offense the Hawks run. Another big part of Grabner’s game is on the penalty kill. Any guy that can score, skate and kill penalties is always welcome.
Petr Mrazek – Goalie
Do I really need to explain why the Hawks need a backup goalie? As soon as Crawford went down, the season was a dumpster fire. We had a fuckin accountant step in the crease for God’s sake! Mrazek is 26 years old, which means he’s still got some years ahead of him to potentially become a full time starter. He only holds a cap hit of $4 million so he’s affordable. To me it just makes sense.
Jack Johnson – Defense
Another solid defender with a low cap hit at a little over $4.3 million. The only reason Jack Johnson isn’t resigning is Columbus is because their defense is so deep. Jack Johnson would fit nicely with a guy of Duncan Keith’s caliber. Johnson hasn’t really been needed as much in Columbus again because of the depth but he would play plenty of minuets in Chicago. (Naturally he signs in Pittsburgh as I’m writing this)
Devante Smith-Pelly – Forward
Now the likeliness of this happening isn’t very good just because of the incident that happened between some scumbag fans and Smith-Pelly during a game earlier in the year. Nevertheless whoever gets this guy is getting an absolute gamer. Just coming off a Stanley Cup victory and a monster playoffs individually. The guy is physical, scores and has miles of heart. Any team trying to make a playoff run should absolutely give him a look.