Updates on the Blackhawks & Rangers.

Find out why the Chicago Blackhawks should bounce back next season, and the latest on Matt Gilroy’s contract status.

TORONTO STAR: Damien Cox recently reported the Chicago Blackhawks won’t have to shed salary this summer as they did last summer, with around $51 million committed to next season’s payroll. The salary cap is expected to rise to $62 million, and apart from goalie Cory Crawford have no nettlesome contract issues to sort out this summer, giving them sufficient cap space to bolster their roster. Cox believes the Blackhawks will be a popular destination for free agents, like perhaps another goalie, another center or more size.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s not quite as rosy as Cox makes it out to be, as they must decide if they’ll re-sign RFAs like Viktor Stalberg, Michael Frolik, Chris Campoli, Troy Brouwer and of course Crawford, plus UFA Tomas Kopecky. That $51 million is also invested in only 14 players, which won’t give them a lot of cap space to use in this summer’s UFA market, at least not in signing any significant free agent talent. The Blackhawks will be a better team next season and will undoubtedly improve their depth, but I’ll be very surprised if they’re amongst the big spenders this summer.

NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks recently reported Rangers defenseman Matt Gilroy is eligible to become a restricted free agent on July 1st and it would cost the Rangers $2.1 million to quality his rights. It’s expected GM Glen Sather will offer Gilroy a multi-year deal well below that number, and if Gilroy declines he’ll be eligible for UFA status.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As Brooks points out, the Rangers signed Gilroy as an undrafted free agent, which is why he was earning $1.75 million this season and why it would be so expensive to quality him. If he wants to remain with the Blueshirts however it could mean accepting perhaps around the same money he earned this season.


  1. too bad that chicago had to sell off so many guys from last years team
    But they got their cup and I’m sure any ‘Hawks fan would take the players leaving after one brilliant season for the chance to drink from Lord Stan’s mug

  2. Problem is.. they let the guys go they should have kept in Ladd & Byfuglien (sp?). They maybe should have let some of their goal scoring depth go. They are handcuffed with the 7M Brian Campbell contract which will be almost impossible to trade.
    Mr. Cox… maybe you had better report the FULL story. 51M for 14 players that means they need to sign about 7 players for 11 M. If they go get a UFA — that will eat up a lot of the available cap space.

  3. Could have gotten a king’s ransom for Patrick Kane, and kept Byfuglien, Ladd, and Versteeg this season. Kane is good, but not worth losing those three players over. Let Hjarlmarsson walk to the Sharks (pick up some draft picks in return), have more cap space for depth…

  4. Van Can you are right, but have you seen the Kane-Toews commercials? This is the face of the franchise and this is big business…..sell-out nights are worth more than cups. But man, I’ll never tire of hearing fans whine about this heinously mismanaged team having to play by the same rules as the rest of the league. And why they matched Hjalmarsson, thus encouraging blackmail, is way beyond me.

  5. Why would you trade Kane? By 3yrs in the league, he won a Cup, ROY, and silver medal. Averages a point per gm (at 22). Who else at his age has ever produced that? Here….I’ll tell you – Over the last 20yrs, only 7 players have posted more points before turning 23 (Kane will be 23 on Nov 19) – Crosby, Jagr, Sundin, Ovechkin, Malkin, Kovalchuk and Lindros. (Only 3 of those guys have a cup, as Kane does)

    Kane is one of just 5 players to register 25g and 40a in each of the last 3 seasons – Ovechkin, Perry, Sedin, St.Louis

    Kane was one of 13 players that averaged a PPG this year.

    He’s 22 years old. How good were the Sedins, Datsyuk, Zetteberg….at that age? How many cups did they have at that age? And Kane was instrumental in winning it. He makes the other 4 guys on the ice with him better. Ladd was a good role player and how did Byfuglien play from Jan until the end of the year

    Feel free to look at Kane’s playoff production as well

  6. Gilroy was alright, but just alright. If it comes down to him or, say, Dubinsky… the choice seems obvious.