Signing Niklas Hjalmarsson Will Spark Another Trade for the Chicago Blackhawks

July 13th, 2010 by Tyler Juranovich Leave a reply »
Blackhawks fans received some good news on July 12 when the Hawks agreed to match San Jose's offer sheet of four years, $14 million to keep young defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson.

That's great news for the fans and the organization. Stan Bowman indicated Hjalmarsson is now part of the core. Just like recent free agency news about the Blackhawks, the signing comes with a price. Most likely a loss of another top player.

After Hjalmarsson's pay raise, the Hawks are back to the problem they can't escape this offseason: the salary cap. 

Including the newcomers, the Hawks have 15 players signed to about $54.3 million, not including the $4 million bonuses given to Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews, pushing the salary to about $58.3 million. 

The salary cap is $59.4 million. 

Given Cristobal Huet is traded away or comes off the payroll somehow, that leaves the payroll to about $52.7 million. 

Assuming the Hawks only carry 22 players and don't spend past $58 million to save for injuries, that leaves the Hawks with $5.3 million to work with eight players. An average of $662,000 each.&nbs ...

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