Here’s your veteran defensive presence for your 2010-2011 Chicago Blackhawks: Nick Boynton. According to CapGeek, Boynton turned down retirement to sign a one-year deal with the Hawks for the league minimum, $500,000.
That now gives the Hawks 7 defensemen under contract on one-way deals. So unless there’s an injury suffered in training camp or the pre-season, this is very likely the unit who will be with the team when the Stanley Cup banner gets unfurled. Their bottom three leaves a ton to be desired, but when your top four defensemen combine for almost $20 million dollars, there aren’t much better options.
With 7 defensemen and two goalies, the Hawks still have two openings up front and just over $2 million in cap space to figure everything out. There are a ton of ways they can about filling those in (there are still a ton of unrestricted wingers looking for work but the Hawks may want to fill the gaps from within) so we’ll just have to wait and see what they do.
–There has been a lot of rumblings the past couple days since the Ilya Kovalchuk ruling because the arbitrator, Nick Bloch, said other deals which are similar to the Kovalchuk deal and will subsequently be investigated were the Roberto Luongo, Marian Hossa, Chris Pronger, and Marc Savard deals. Of course, he may have spoken out of turn by naming Hossa in the statement because unlike the other three deals, Hossa already played year one of his contract. The other three kick in this season.
The NHL has done a ton of ass-backwards and ridiculous things through the years, but overturning a contract which has already been approved for a year would immediately shoot to the top of the list. That’s why I think Bloch may have made a blunder by naming Hossa in that group. There’s just no conceivable way the Hawks receive any kind of punishment for this. There’s not.