I guess we have to talk about it. With the small but inviting possibility of Iggy playing in a Blackhawks uniform, our eyes were just way to focused on this move not to talk about it. By the end, it seemed like a long shot, with Boston appearing to be the leading offer, but I still salivated at the potential.
Sure, the Hawks are far more interested in a center. This does not take away from what a player like Iginla brings to any team, and even though they both play right wings, it would have been fun to watch him feed Kane all night, and vis-versa. What does he bring to a team, besides his size, speed, hands, aggressive play, and professionalism both on and off the ice? Well, I think he just brought another Cup to Pittsburgh.
There is still time for SB to make a move that could match the aggressive grab for the Cup that the Pens are putting forth. It's just that there really aren't too many names that seem like they are up for the taking like Iginla was. Who knows, maybe there is someone who we are unaware of.
Seeing that the Pens were already a team very capable of winning the Cup this year, the recent additions of Brenden Morrow, Douglas Murray, and now Iginla sort of put them way at the top of any list of favored teams. I just can't see it not happening for them now.
But we are a Hawks blog, and we talk about the Hawks. What should their game plan be from here on out?
First of all, Hossa and Sharp are skating but will miss Friday nights big matchup. Bummer.
If the Hawks do not address their big problem at the dot with a trade, we shall need to see some shifting. Hell, I say let's see some shifting anyway. Since Sharp is probably going to be taking face-offs by June, why not start with his return? Or, bring up Pirri from Rockford instead.
Either way, I want to see Frolik off the 4th line. He might even be the answer for Kane. Someone needs to get him the puck, because it isn't happening enough now, and Kane is still racking up the points. Frolik is the answer to the 2nd line's defensive zone woes, and of having a grinder to get the puck to Kane. Add in Fro's offensive talents (whether or not he puts the puck in the net) and I see Kane bursting towards the top of the points hill. Not 5th or 6th, but the top.
Hossa is going to the 3rd line with Bolland. Just do it already! It is darn near necessary that he see fewer minutes per game, and I know it will bring out the best in Bolland. Anyone can play with Toews and Saad, and let's say make it Stalberg. Will anyone argue that those 3 will make for one hell of a line? I would argue that the opposition would never touch the puck. Stalberg will switch to the right side, which also happens to be where he has been entering the zone lately anyhow.
Changing sides on the wing is easier than people make it out to be. More important is chemistry and the needs of the line. What can I say, the Hawks are right wing heavy.
Shaw plays with Hossa and Bolland.
The thing I liked about the Iginla possibility, is that you could have put anyone between him and Kane. It would have been the perfect opportunity to give Pirri that spot. If you bring up Pirri now, then you have more options. I think we need to keep in mind that Shaw is winning more face-offs than Bolland as well.
What I hope this picture paints for you, if it doesn't convince you that it is exactly the right thing, is a picture of options for the Hawks, and one that points to why the current combos are wrong. The focus should be on getting the puck to Kane more frequently, and on Bolland having his worst season as a Hawk. Put Bolland back where he can be of more value, all while keeping the ability to roll 3 even lines. BTW, Bickell/Kruger/Hayes still makes for one hell of a 4th line.
Filed under: View from the Bench