Joel Quenneville was fired by the Chicago Blackhawks on November 2018 and have managed to go 3-11-2 once Jeremy Colliton took over. While the blistering cold of the winter starts setting in, let’s take a look at a few reasons to stay positive going forward if you consider yourself a Chicago Blackhawks fan.
Reasons To Stay Positive
The best hope that Blackhawk fans can look forward to is in the coaches, both past and present. Jeremy Colliton, the current bench boss, is considered a thankless situation. The team is currently getting roasted when it comes to 5-on-5, with a percentage for goals at 43.85, while suffering with the worst power play of 11.6% along with a 74.4% penalty kill which is the fourth-worst in the league. This is essentially a problem with construction as oppose to coaching and one can only hope that Stan Bowman, the general manager of the team, gives Colliton a greater tool chest to reconstruct the squad.
As for the past coach, the hope is that Joel Quenneville is hired sooner rather than later. Once that occurs, it should assist the true problem that is plaguing the franchise at the moment, the no-movement clauses. What they actually need is the exact same thing Dale Tallon provided when Brian Campbell settled to waive the no-trade clause.
It already seems like a lost season for Chicago. Blackhawks fans should consider this feasible plan: a playoff run against the Bears as a winter distraction, then a rival for Chicago next October. Chicago is currently stuck in neutral as they are currently constructed. Stan Bowman can make a few immediate changes, such as the Dylan Strome and Brandan Perlini swap over Nick Schmaltz. However, a complete overhaul is quite impossible when you consider 6 out of the 7 players that have the highest annual salaries have a no-trade clause. Therefore, the current season will only have a few small tweaks which means the changes that take place next year will be far more significant.
With the projected cap to be around $83 million during the 2019/20 season, it leaves the Blackhawks with around $20 million which they can spend. The Blackhawks had money to spend during the summer last time, but unfortunately, the market was quite limited. This time, there’s a possibility that Jacob Trouba, Mark Stone, Eric Staal, Jeff Skinner, Wayne Simmonds, Joe Pavelski, Artemi Panarin, Anders Lee, Erik Karlsson, Kevin Hayes, Jake Gardiner, Jordan Eberle, and Matt Duchene will be available this time around. The best way forward is to utilize one of these players and complement the blue line with an immediate flush prospect tool.
There are still several signs of development when it comes to the Blackhawks. Chicago gave 1,395 minutes to its rookies which is the fourth highest in the league and it seems like each of the rookies that have been given a chance is providing the goods. Perhaps this is something they will need to continue going forward?