Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury and other trade candidates play in Blackhawks’ loss to Jets
For Fleury, Calvin de Haan, Dominik Kubalik and Dylan Strome, it might have been their last game in a Hawks uniform.
Marc-Andre Fleury, Calvin de Haan, Dylan Strome, Dominik Kubalik and Ryan Carpenter all took part in the Blackhawks’ 6-4 loss Sunday to the Jets.
Whether it was their last time suiting up for the Hawks soon will be known.
The trade deadline is 2 p.m. Monday, and it would be surprising if the Hawks didn’t make any more moves. General manager Kyle Davidson and the Hawks are entering what might be a lengthy rebuild, and that process was kicked into high gear with the deal Friday that sent wing Brandon Hagel to the Lightning.
‘‘Yeah, we heard Kyle say that when he first took over, and he’s staying true to his word,’’ wing Alex DeBrincat said. ‘‘I’m sure it was a tough decision to see a guy like [Hagel] go, but what we got back is pretty good, too. So that’s his job to do, and for us [it’s] just to go out there and play hockey.’’
Now that Hagel has moved on, the most intrigue is around Fleury. A future Hall of Famer who might be the final piece of a team’s title puzzle, Fleury only will be traded if the Hawks find the right deal and he signs off.
Beyond Fleury, who made 26 saves Sunday and has been linked to the Wild, change certainly is coming to a Hawks team that’s all but certain to miss the postseason. De Haan would be a useful part for a contender looking to bolster its blue line. Kubalik and Strome have the potential to add scoring for teams seeking offense, and Carpenter is the kind of defensive-minded forward teams love to use in tense postseason scenarios.
All might bring back valuable prospects and draft picks to help Davidson add to the Hawks’ assets.
‘‘I thought, ‘OK, here we go, something’s going to happen,’ or I was going to have to take somebody out of the net after the first [period] because something was going down,’’ interim coach Derek King said. ‘‘But, you know, I haven’t even seen them down in our room. So maybe there is some stuff brewing. Who knows? But that’s out of my control.’’
By Monday afternoon, it will become apparent what — if anything — was developing. At least it seems that cornerstones Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews and Seth Jones aren’t going anywhere.
‘‘You don’t need to trade those guys on me,’’ King said. ‘‘I hate seeing guys get traded because you start getting comfortable, your teammates are starting to become a team, the locker room’s tight, everybody likes each other, there’s no hatred going on. It was starting to build right. It just happened to be this is the timing of it. All of a sudden, you might lose some bodies.
‘‘Hopefully guys like Kane, Toews and these guys, we don’t need to lose them. But, again, it’s a business. If trades do happen, we deal with them as a staff.’’
Something Hawks players have been forced to deal with is speculation, but DeBrincat insisted it wasn’t distracting him from doing what he’s paid to do.
‘‘it’s our job to play hockey, no matter what’s going on around us,’’ DeBrincat said. ‘‘When you get to the rink, you can put that aside and just worry about the game. So it’s our job to kind of go through this.’’