At The Athletic, Scott Lazerus and Mark Powers put together a trade deadline big board for the Chicago Blackhawks today, and there are a few interesting nuggets about what the Blackhawks trade deadline might look like, including the latest on Marc-André Fleury.
Despite conflicting reports on Saturday evening, Powers and Laz reported this morning Fleury’s agent Allan Walsh, said, “No decisions have been made, all options still on the table.” Powers and Laz have Fleury’s likelihood of being traded before the March 21 deadline at 50 percent right now, which sounds about right.
— Scott Powers (@ByScottPowers) March 7, 2022
Assuming Kyle Davidson intends to honor the unwritten agreement that Fleury and Bowman had with each other, this is all merely a matter of what Marc-André wants to do.
But, what does Fleury want to do?
Does he want to stay in Chicago despite the Blackhawks being out of contention? Fleury has made it clear that he does not like moving his family around at this point in his career. He just moved them from Vegas to Chicago this summer, so there’s a strong chance that Fleury values his family’s stability more than chasing another Stanley Cup.
On the other side of that coin, Fleury will be a free agent after this season, and I find it unlikely that he re-ups with the Blackhawks. Fleury could ride the next six weeks out with the Blackhawks and retire, but he’s also said he has more left in the tank. If he’s going to play elsewhere next season via free agency, he’s just putting off the inevitable by refusing a trade this season.
If Fleury and the Blackhawks could find a trade in which Fleury not only gets to compete for a Stanley Cup this season and can sign an extension with his new team to finish out his career there, he would have the best of both worlds. Kyle Davidson will have made good on the agreement, a move that will bode well in his future negotiations with other players. If I’m Kyle Davidson, I’m working hand-in-hand with Fleury’s agent Allan Walsh to try to facilitate a move like that.