Why the Blackhawks should extend Kane and Toews
November 10, 2022
In 2014, Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane signed 8-year contracts with the Chicago Blackhawks. With the start of the 2022/2023 NHL season, those contracts are coming to a close. The two Blackhawks legends are out of contract at the end of the season. With the Hawks in the middle of a rebuild, many fans are hoping that Kane and Toews are traded to contending teams for assets like prospects and draft picks. However, in my opinion, current general manager Kyle Davidson should do the opposite and extend Kane and Toews for these 3 reasons:
1. Leadership and Experience
Being the main two offensive stars on three Stanley Cup winning teams, Kane and Toews know how to win championships and be leaders. This experience can prove to be vital in the Hawks rebuilding process as younger prospects can learn from these fantastic legends. The prospects would be able to pick up traits and characteristics that would form them into better players in a shorter amount of time. This would accelerate the rebuild as the prospects would develop way faster. Toews is also the best captain that this franchise has ever had, while Kane has been a superstar and Alternate Captain on the Hawks for many seasons now. They both have great leadership qualities that can be useful to teach and coach the young Hawks team.
2. Still Great Players
While many others could argue that Kane and Toews still being great players is even more reason to trade them, I would argue the opposite. This Blackhawks team is already bad enough to lose games and tank. It is not necessary to trade them for the team to get even worse. There are three amazing prospects in this year’s NHL draft that would tremendously help the rebuild and I believe that this roster is already bad enough to be in prime contention for one of these top three draft spots. Jonathan Toews is currently on fire with seven goals and two assists in 12 games to start the season and 2nd in points, behind Kane by one. Kane has two goals and eight assists. The duo is still sitting atop the Hawks points rankings. Many fans in Chicago are only interested in the team because of them now. They want to watch Kane and Toews in the final stretch of their careers. In terms of ticket sales and an economic standpoint, it is still highly beneficial for them to be part of the franchise.
3. Hawks For Life
Chicago is home for Kane and Toews. Kane has a family here. His son was born here. Toews has always said that Chicago is a city that he loves to play for and live in. Beyond that, Kane and Toews have earned the right to be Blackhawks until they retire. The duo has given three championships to the franchise and have been committed to the team from the start of their careers. They still have milestones and franchise records to beat. The Athletic’s reliable Blackhawks beat writer, Mark Lazerus, has stated in an article before that “Kane wants to break all the Blackhawks franchise records.” As of Nov. 9, 2022, Patrick Kane is still 33 years of age and 278 games, 172 goals, 168 assists, and 277 points away from breaking the all-time Blackhawks record in those categories. Yes, I admit that these are tough numbers for Kane to get in the rest of his Hawks career as he is slowly declining, but he is still consistently getting 80/90 point seasons. Meanwhile, Toews can also continue to climb the Blackhawks franchise leaderboards, being in the top 10 Hawks of all of those categories mentioned above.
In the end, the Blackhawks legends will get the say in whether they want to get traded off the roster as they have no-movement clauses on their contracts unless they waive that right. However, while they are still contemplating on their futures in the NHL, Kyle Davidson should give them new contract offers before it is too late and they officially ask for a trade or leave for free in the summer.