Possible Price for Seth Jones, Brent Sopel Speaks Up, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

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Possible Price for Seth Jones, Brent Sopel Speaks Up, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

Chicago Blackhawks

We have officially entered “silly season.”

Once the Stanley Cup Final was over, the NHL offseason took a bit to get going. But once it did, it’s been going 100 MPH. From Duncan Keith, to Ryan Suter, Zach Parise, and Pekka Rinne, we’ve only just begun. And in the realm of the Chicago Blackhawks, things are going to stay spicy in the offseason as the Seth Jones rumors continue to grow, as does the story surrounding the lawsuits and allegations against the team.

•   So much for my first offseason with you all here on Bleacher Nation Blackhawks…

•   On the latest edition of the “31 Thoughts” Podcast with Jeff Marek and Elliotte Friedman, they pondered what a potential trade package would have to include in a deal for Seth Jones in a sign and trade deal. This is not to say this is what they have heard, just what they themselves suspect. Needless to say, it’s hefty.

•   Like I said in the tweet, hard pass. The Blackhawks have already said that they have no interest in trading Kirby Dach, and giving up Alex DeBrincat should also be a non-starter in 99% of trade packages.  Jones is a good player, a top-tier defenseman that would make a huge impact on the blue-line for the Blackhawks, but at that price, you hedge your future and pretty much make the team worse.

•   A factor that the Blackhawks may hope helps bring Seth Jones to Chicago is having his brother, Caleb, on the team following the trade with the Oilers for Duncan Keith. But so far, Caleb is probably just focusing on his new opportunity with the Blackhawks before becoming a negotiator on their behalf.

•   Again, welcome to silly season…

•   This is also not mentioning that the Tampa Bay Lightning rented the crap out of the Stanley Cup. It’s almost like that moment was the starting point for the offseason to hit the high-gear.

•   In case you missed it yesterday, I did my best to commemorate Duncan Keith’s time with the Blackhawks and the legacy he lives behind in Chicago. I could argue the most important Blackhawks player of the last 15 years has been Keith, not Jonathan Toews or Patrick Kane.

•   I’m really going to miss Duncan Keith.

•   Pivoting to the Blackhawks lawsuits and allegations against them, TSN’s Rick Westhead published an interview he did with former Blackhawks defenseman and 2010 Stanley Cup Champion Brent Sopel regarding the allegations and what he and his teammates knew at the time.

•   In the interview, Sopel reiterated that pretty much everyone on the team, coaches and players alike, knew about what happened and heard about then-skills coach Paul Vincent bringing it to the attention of the front office. Sopel says he did not speak out about it until now for two reasons: He figured that management handled the issue back in 2010, and he feared retaliation from the Blackhawks against him and his foundation. He says he believes most former players are fearing the same thing for their current and/or future career opportunities.

•   For an in-depth look at the pending legal process that is still ahead of us in the cases against the Blackhawks, I recommend reading through the latest from Mark Lazerus, Scott Powers, and Katie Strang from The Athletic.

•   The Blackhawks will fight with every resource they have to “win” these legal battles, and in doing so will likely burn nearly all of what is left of their “good standing” in the court of public opinion. They won’t care because they likely think that winning a Stanley Cup would make all this go away. Unfortunately, the Blackhawks are nowhere near winning a Stanley Cup.

•   A Happy 22nd Birthday to MacKenzie Entwistle!

•   Elsewhere in the league, the Seattle Kraken are officially on CapFriendly!

•   The Seattle Expansion Draft is one week away on July 21st. It will be carried on ESPN2 in the U.S. and protection lists from all NHL teams, besides Vegas, are due to the league offices by 5:00 p.m. ET on Saturday, July 17th. The lists will be made public on Sunday the 18th.

•   Highly recommend going through this guide to the expansion draft from ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski and Emily Kaplan.

•   One name that will be available to the Seattle Kraken in the Expansion Draft will now be Buffalo’s Jeff Skinner.

•   Also looking like he will be available, only this time in free agency, Colorado Avalanche Captain Gabriel Landeskog may be hitting the open market.

•   Highly recommend taking a gander at Dom Luszczyszyn’s Top 50 Unrestricted Free Agent list at The Athletic. A number of names and comparable contracts in here that are of interest to the Blackhawks.

•   That will do it for today. Enjoy your Wednesday!



Author: Mario Tirabassi

Mario Tirabassi is a writer for Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Mario_Tirabassi.