Monday, July 10, 2006

Are the Blackhawks Next Season's Most Intriguing Team?

The three-way deal and subsequent three-year signing of Martin Havlat adds a bit of intrigue to the possible transformation of one of the leagues perennially least interesting teams. Havlat will bring size, speed, scoring and a nasty streak to a totally uninspired club.

I like young/old balance among the club's skaters going into next season. They have veteran blueline leadership in Adrian Aucoin (if he stays healthy) and Jassen Cullimore (if he remembers what it takes to win) to compliment stud young defenders in Brent Seabrook, Duncan Keith and possibly Cam Barker. Up front, veterans Havlat, Kyle Calder (love this guy's fire) and Bryan Smolinski will join youngster Patrick Sharp and potential future stars Brandon Bochinski, Pavel Vorobiev, Rene Borque and Tuomo Ruutu on lines that should go at least two deep in scoring.

Oh yeah, they've also got Radim Vrbata floating around out there avoiding traffic and pumping up some PP scoring.

They are still way suspect between the pipes. Progress in other areas could be all for naught if their goalkeeping fails 'em. Will the Bulin Wall start playing if he sees a team around him that gives a flip? If not, they only have Patrick Lalime waiting in the wings and fresh off the embarrassment of a lengthy stint with the Peoria Rivermen last season.

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