Blackhawks’ trade market: Lengthy list of players who might be dealt

Almost anyone on the Hawks’ roster might be available at the right price. The Hawks are still waiting for Patrick Kane’s and Jonathan Toews’ decisions, but those two are not the only players potentially on the move.

SHARE Blackhawks’ trade market: Lengthy list of players who might be dealt
Sam Lafferty skates with the puck.

Sam Lafferty is one of many Blackhawks who could be traded before the NHL’s March 3 deadline.

Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

Friday marked the start of the four-week countdown to the NHL trade deadline March 3. Just like last year, the Blackhawks might be one of the busiest teams in the league during this stretch.

Given how the vast majority of the Hawks’ built-to-lose roster is made up of veterans, almost everyone could be traded, assuming the return is right. The same would be true for cornerstones Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews, but only if they inform general manager Kyle Davidson they’ll waive their no-trade clauses.

The Islanders potentially jump-started the market this week by acquiring Bo Horvat from the Canucks for Anthony Beauvillier, a first-round draft pick and top prospect Aatu Raty, setting a high-price precedent that surely excited other sellers around the league.

After the All-Star break, the ripple effects might start promptly or they might take awhile. Either way, expect the Hawks to field calls on most, if not all, of the trade-bait players listed below.

And if a team comes calling about somebody not on this list, the Hawks probably would consider that, too. They have no reason to be picky.

PATRICK KANE

Contract: Pending unrestricted free agent, $10.5 million salary-cap hit (per CapFriendly).

Value: High.

Trade likelihood: Medium.

The lowdown: Kane holds all the power right now and hasn’t tipped his hand about whether he’s willing to leave. Even if he is, there are plenty of factors to complicate trade negotiations: high cap hit, lingering lower-body injury and reduced production this season (34 points in 45 games).

But he is still Patrick Kane, and he will be heavily sought-after, if available. The Rangers long have been considered Kane’s most likely post-Chicago destination, but that’s not a certainty by any means. The Hawks’ asking price is probably a package of a first-round pick and a notable prospect.

JONATHAN TOEWS

Contract: Pending UFA, $10.5M cap hit.

Value: Medium.

Trade likelihood: Medium.

The lowdown: All of Kane’s caveats apply to Toews, too, but his cap hit will be an even bigger obstacle. Even 50% retention might not be enough, although the Hawks happily will do it. That could necessitate getting a third-party team involved to retain another 25%, which would require pick compensation and further reduce the Hawks’ overall trade return.

Nonetheless, Toews’ leadership skills, faceoff dominance and improved-from-last-season production (28 points in 46 games) would attract contenders if he decides to leave. The Avalanche, Hurricanes and Toews’ hometown Jets are three destinations that might make sense.

MAX DOMI

Contract: Pending UFA, $3M cap hit.

Value: Medium to high.

Trade likelihood: Medium.

The lowdown: Domi was signed last summer with the idea of flipping him at the deadline. There’s still a good chance that happens, but he has impressed so much this season — both as the team’s leading scorer (35 points in 48 games) and as a hard-working, culture-setting guy — that there’s also a good chance he’ll be re-signed. The Hawks’ asking price for Domi is probably a second-round pick.

ANDREAS ATHANASIOU

Contract: Pending UFA, $3M cap hit.

Value: Medium to low.

Trade likelihood: High.

The lowdown: Athanasiou began the season in the same boat as Domi. He hasn’t impressed quite as much, but he has been fine, with 16 points (including 10 goals) in 47 games.

His speed and vision are good for a few highlight-reel plays per week, and he has improved defensively (albeit from a low starting point). A third- or fourth-round pick probably would be an acceptable offer.

SAM LAFFERTY

Contract: One year left, $1.15M cap hit.

Value: Medium.

Trade likelihood: High.

The lowdown: Lafferty already is drawing substantial interest, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported, and for obvious reasons: He’s cheap, versatile, defensively responsible and an extremely good skater. He has 17 points in 42 games this season, but eight of those came in 13 games in January.

A contender with penalty-kill issues — such as the Kraken (30th in net PK efficiency), Kings (26th), Oilers (23rd) or Avalanche (20th) — might be the most logical fit. He could end up being a clever buy-low, sell-high investment by Davidson.

JAKE McCABE

Contract: Two years left, $4M cap hit.

Value: High.

Trade likelihood: Medium.

The lowdown: McCabe’s major bounce-back season has done wonders for his reputation, career trajectory and trade value. He has been arguably the Hawks’ best defenseman and has 14 points in 45 games. His reasonable cost certainty is also attractive, although he can block trades to seven teams.

The Oilers, Kings and Maple Leafs have shown interest in McCabe, Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli reported.

CONNOR MURPHY

Contract: Three years left, $4.4M cap hit.

Value: Medium.

Trade likelihood: Low.

The lowdown: Like Athanasiou compared to Domi, Murphy is a similar asset to McCabe — they’re both 29-year-old defensive defensemen — but a bit less valuable. He has spent most of the season on the second pairing and has seven points in 48 games.

There’s a good chance Murphy sticks around as a veteran leader and alternate captain through the Hawks’ rebuild, but there’s also a chance he will be moved if the opportunity arises. He can block trades to 10 teams.

JACK JOHNSON

Contract: Pending UFA, $950K cap hit.

Value: Low.

Trade likelihood: High.

The lowdown: If a contender wants the 36-year-old Johnson to provide depth and experience for their playoff run, the Hawks well might trade him for very little return — conceivably as little as ‘‘future considerations’’ — to reward him for being a good sport.

The veteran defenseman did aid the Avalanche’s Stanley Cup run last spring. He has four points in 48 games with the Hawks.

ALEX STALOCK

Contract: Pending UFA, $750K cap hit.

Value: Medium.

Trade likelihood: Low.

The lowdown: The Hawks’ top priority is Stalock’s health in the wake of his second concussion of the season. But if he does recover soon, it’s conceivable he could attract trade interest, as rare as it is for goalies to move at the deadline. The Kings are one contender searching for goaltending help, so they theoretically might be interested.

When not injured, Stalock has played extremely well this season behind a shoddy defense, going 6-6-1 with a .918 save percentage and a plus-8.1 goals saved above average in 14 games. His off-ice presence is also fantastic.

The Latest
The Sox will make a corresponding move on Friday.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker in 2022 spoke before state Democratic Party leaders in New Hampshire and Florida, fueling speculation that he was plotting a presidential run in 2024. Since then he’s repeatedly tamped down questions about his presidential ambitions.
A celebration around Willow Slough Fish and Wildlife Area’s 75th anniversary and Chicago Yacht Club’s In-Water Boat & Tech Show are Go & Show this week.
Surprising flavor combinations — think gravy-flavored Jones Soda or Sour Patch Kids Oreos — are showing up more frequently in grocery stores and restaurant chains.
Two men were found in a soccer field suffering from gunshot wounds at La Villita Park in the 2800 block of South Sacramento Avenue.