Happy anniversary to the greatest free-agent signing in Chicago sports history!
- On July 1, 2009, the Blackhawks inked Marian Hossa to a 12-year/$62.8 million deal, which worked out pretty darn well.
- Marian Hossa was one of the greatest two-way players in NHL history, but he is also widely considered the single most significant free-agent signing in Chicago sports history. Some argue Jon Lester; I argue it’s not even close … 3 > 1. Hossa’s arrival in Chicago was the final piece that helped propel their talented young core to three Stanley Cups in five years.
- In April, when the Blackhawks announced that they would retire Hossa’s No. 81 next season, Rocky Wirtz joked that he would have been happy if the Hossa signing parlayed into one Stanley Cup. Hossa said that he chose Chicago because he came here and wanted to win. Wirtz and Hossa got their wishes and then some.
- Hossa will become the eighth player in franchise history to have his number retired, joining Glenn Hall (No. 1), Keith Magnuson (No. 3), Pierre Pilote (No. 3), Bobby Hull (No. 9), Denis Savard (No. 18), Stan Mikita (No. 21) and Tony Esposito (No. 35). Elite company with more to follow for sure. Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews will undoubtedly join Hossa in the United Center rafters in the coming years. Duncan Keith has a solid case, as well. Many argue that Steve Larmer’s time is long overdue. But for now, No. 81 will be the first of the One Goal era to go up.
- We learned in May that the Blackhawks would be playing a regular-season home game in Milwaukee this season at the Fiserv Forum, where the Bucks make their home during the NBA season. Dario Melendez reported on Thursday that the Minnesota Wild would be the Blackhawks’ opponent in this game, possibly occurring on October 16. Wild beat reporter Michael Russo confirmed Melendez’s report:
- NHL insider Elliotte Friedman shared some interesting news on the Blackhawks and a potential market for Alex DeBrincat on Thursday afternoon. Friedman joined Mick Kern and Peter Bruce on the Under Review show on Sirius XM’s NHL Radio and shared an interesting nugget on the DeBrincat front, telling Kern and Bruce that the Blackhawks have turned down a hefty offer for DeBrincat that would have included multiple first-rounders.
- Friedman didn’t name a team that might have made the Blackhawks the offer, but if the Blackhawks did indeed turn that offer down, their ask appears to start with either three-first rounders or two-first rounders and a prospect that can play in Chicago.
- More here:
- Scott Powers and Mark Lazerus surveyed more than 2,000 Blackhawks fans recently to take the fan-bases temperature on a bevy of topics, from their confidence in Kyle Davidson to whether or not they believe Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews will be on the roster come opening night in 2023.
- Most fans are confident that Kyle Davidson’s vision is the right vision for the Blackhawks, the hire of Jeff Greenberg was well-received and considered innovative and forward-thinking, and Kane being here past this season is a coin-flip while most believe that Toews is gone. Most fans also want the Blackhawks to keep Chelsea Dagger as the team’s goal song if that’s something you care about.
- There are plenty more voting results and voter commentary inside, so if you have some time today, you’ll probably enjoy reading the full story:
- A Denver Police officer mistook Bo Byram for a fan during the Avs’ championship parade. At least the Police Department’s Twitter account had a funny response lined up for the occasion.
- From everything we’ve seen on Twitter, it looks like the Stanley Cup has taken a beating since coming into possession of the Colorado Avalanche. Whoops! 😬
- Elliotte Friedman reported this morning that the San Jose Sharks, who are still searching for a new GM, have informed Bob Boughner that he will not be returning to the Sharks as their head coach. Boughner has spent the last three seasons behind the San Jose bench and owns a 67-85-23 record.
- That’s it for today. Happy 4th of July Weekend!
Kaiser Steals the Show, a ‘Michigan’ for Canada, Hunter Discusses Front Office Role, and Other Blackhawks Bullets
DeRozan Lights Up Drew League (Again), Jeanie Buss Knows Who the GOAT is, Myles Turner’s Market, and Other Bulls Bullets