Jonathan Toews said he is not in favor of the current Chicago Blackhawks rebuild.
“We’re talking about a process that will take five years or more, depending on [le directeur général] Kyle [Davidson] “, said the captain of the Blackhawks to The Athletic tuesday. “That aspect is not appealing to me at all. »
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On July 14, Davidson indicated that he had spoken to Toews and his longtime teammate Patrick Kane about the direction the team is taking, and that he was going to continue to do so. He was unsure, however, whether the veteran strikers would buy into the rebuilding plan. The Blackhawks traded young forwards Alex DeBrincat and Kirby Dash on July 7, on the first day of the 2022 draft, as well as Brandon Hagel before the trade deadline last March.
“I can’t speak for ‘Kaner’, but all the changes to our team over the last three or four years have been extremely draining and exhausting,” Toews said. We had a player like Alex DeBrincat, whom Kane had taken under his wing. I like to think Kirby and I had that chemistry too. And so they left. We have seen repeated changes. I’m learning to be patient, but there’s no doubt that this timeline is daunting. It’s exhausting to think about. So I’m not going to sit here and say what the future holds or what I’m going to do, because I have no idea. »
The Blackhawks traded DeBrincat to the Ottawa Senators for first- and second-round picks (Kevin Korchinski, seventh overall; Paul Ludwinski, 39th) in the 2022 draft, as well as a third-round pick in 2024. They sent Dach to the Montreal Canadiens in return for the 13th (Frank Nazar) and 66th (Gavin Hayes) selections in the 2022 draft. Hagel was traded to the Tampa Bay Lightning on March 18 in return for forwards Boris Katchouk and Taylor Raddysh as well as first-round picks in 2023 and 2024, who are protected if they’re inside the top-10.
DeBrincat, who played regularly on the same line as Kane, had 78 points in 82 games last season, taking first place in Chicago with 41 goals to tie his NHL personal best set in 2018-19. The Blackhawks’ second-round pick (39th) in the 2016 draft, the 24-year-old has 307 points (160 goals, 147 assists) in 368 regular season games as well as six points (two goals, four assists) in nine playoff games Stanley Cup playoffs.
Dach had 26 points (nine goals, 17 assists) in 70 games last season. The 21-year-old, who was drafted third overall by Chicago in 2019, has 59 points (19 goals, 40 assists) in 152 regular season games and six points (one goal, five assists) in nine games series.
Davidson revealed that he didn’t speak to Toews and Kane before making those trades.
Toews, 34, and Kane, 33, are both entering the final season of eight-year contracts signed July 9, 2014. Toews, drafted third overall by Chicago in 2006, has 852 points (357 goals , 495 assists) in 1,014 regular season games and 119 points (45 goals, 74 assists) in 137 playoff games. Kane, drafted first overall by the Blackhawks in 2007, has amassed 1,180 points (430 goals, 750 assists) in 1,107 regular season games and 132 points (52 goals, 80 assists) in 136 playoff games. Both won the Stanley Cup with the Blackhawks in 2010, 2013 and 2015.
Video: CHI@LAK: Kane ends game in AN
Toews has captained Chicago since 2008.
Davidson took over as GM on October 26, after Stan Bowman stepped down as president of hockey operations and GM.
On October 20, 2020, the Blackhawks posted a letter on their social media platforms stating that they are committed to developing young players and rebuilding the roster. Chicago (28-42-12) finished seventh in the Central Division last season, 29 points shy of the Nashville Predators and a No. 4 playoff ace in the Western Conference.
The Blackhawks have missed the playoffs in four of the last five seasons.
“When we swapped ‘Hags’, then ‘Cat’ and Kirby, reality hit us hard and we knew they were really going to look to the future,” Toews continued. It’s unfortunate that we’re here. But that’s the situation we’re in. Some of these things are out of my control, and it’s a weird situation as a captain. »