CHICAGO – The rebuild is real now, and moves the last week have proved it.
Kyle Davidson wasn’t kidding when he said he was rebuilding the Blackhawks, and right now three key players remain in a bit of limbo.
Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews are entering the last of their eight-year contracts while defenseman Seth Jones is just starting his long-term deal with the franchise. All of them have no-trade clauses in their contracts, so including them in a trade would take some doing.
They are all represented by the same agent – Pat Brisson – who released a statement to TSN and The Athletic’s Pierre LeBrun on Wednesday.
In it, Brisson says that while they are “not necessarily in agreement” with the team’s current direction, they will “let the dust settle” before making a decision on each player’s future.
Parting ways with Kane and Toews could end up being a difficult but necessary part of the rebuild since each provides the team their best chance at a return. Both are franchise icons and were critical to three Stanley Cup titles, but an upcoming rebuild makes it unlikely the group would compete for a title for at least a few seasons.
Jones is just starting the eight-year, $76 million contract he signed under previous general manager Stan Bowman and has an AAV of $9.5 million through the 2029-2030 season. While a solid veteran defender that could aid a contending team, the contract could make him difficult to deal even if Jones were to approve one.
So as the construction of the new-look Blackhawks continues, the question of what will become of the three main players left very much remains up in the air.