The writing on the wall continued to get bigger and brighter as the weeks progressed, but today it’s finally happened: the Chicago Blackhawks have acquired defenseman Seth Jones, the No. 32 overall pick in the draft, and the Blue Jackets’ sixth-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft from the Columbus. Heading the other way to Columbus is Adam Boqvist, the 12th overall pick, 44th overall pick, and Chicago’s 2022 first-round pick. The Blue Jackets are also flipping the 44th overall pick to Carolina in exchange for Jake Bean.
Jones extension with CHI is 8 years, $76 million that can be executed on July 28. Apologies for initial tweet of 7 x $9.5 – it is $9.5 million AAV, just with an extra year.
— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) July 23, 2021
In addition, the Blackhawks have reportedly extended Jones on an eight-year deal worth $9.5M in AAV. That is a hefty deal with over $40M of the total deal being paid in signing bonus money.
After trade #Blackhawks signed Seth Jones to 8 yr $9.5M Cap Hit Ext
Yr 1 750K Sal+ 9.25M SB
Yr 2 7.5M +5M SB
Yr 3 7.5M +5M SB
Yr 4 5.5M +5M SB
Yr 5 7M + 1M SB
Yr 6 2.5M + 5M SB
Yr 7 2.5M +5M SB
Yr 8 2.5M +5M SB
— PuckPedia (@PuckPedia) July 23, 2021
The Blackhawks NEEDED a true No. 1. defenseman in their organization and haven’t had one for a few years (even if Duncan Keith played the role to the best of his abilities). Jones steps into the team and is immediately that No. 1 defenseman.
The major gamble that the Blackhawks are taking on this deal is that, not only will Jones need to be the No. 1 defenseman on the team, he’ll need to fill that role and be a STAR on the team. The reported extension is what a franchise-changing player makes in this league. Is Jones that? We’ll have to see, but he hasn’t been that kind of caliber player over the past few seasons. The hope, the prayer, is that the change of scenery from Columbus can activate the old Seth Jones.
Seth Jones, this time with positive value probability for A SEVEN YEAR $9.5 MILLION EXTENSION ARE YOU KIDDING ME pic.twitter.com/QK3oGKpRvL
— dom at the athletic (@domluszczyszyn) July 23, 2021
Losing Boqvist in the trade is a major bummer for the future of the club. He had an up and down start with the team in the beginning of his NHL career, but seemed to have turned a small corner in the second-half of last season. He has top-pair upside still in his future, but Chicago must feel very comfortable with the depth of their defensive core to lose Boqvist. The chips are at the center of the table that Jones is going to replace Boqvist and speed-up the “rebuilding” process that Chicago is in the middle of.
The Blackhawks had the leverage in the situation over the Blue Jackets. They knew Jones didn’t want to re-sign in Columbus and they knew that he wanted to play in Chicago. The Blackhawks still manage to over-pay for Jones on a deal that is a major gamble with the loss of Boqvist in the process. Jones will be the third-highest paid defenseman in the NHL when the extension kicks in for the 2022-23 season.
On the bright side, the Blackhawks make the deal while holding onto Kirby Dach, Alex DeBrincat, and Lukas Reichel in the process.
We’ll let the dust settle before making a snap judgement on the deal. In the meantime, drop us a like on Facebook to stay up to date on all your Blackhawks news and rumors.