The implosion of the 2015 Stanley Cup winning Blackhawks team has begun. I don’t want anything in this post to be considered a criticism of the Hawks front office. Winning 3 Cups in 6 years doesn’t happen by accident. The front office has rightfully earned the trust of the fans.
The Blackhawks are currently in a very difficult financial situation. The biggest change from last year to this year is that the Kane and Toews deals kick in. The cap hit for each of them has gone from 6.3 MM to 10.5 MM. Kane and Toews became collectively 8.4 MM more expensive. Another issue is that the salary cap didn’t go up as much as expected. In December 2014 The salary cap was expected to be around $73 MM. Before then it was projected to be even higher. However, the cap for the 2015-2016 is only 71.4 MM.
As a result of the above the Hawks are going to look very different next year. Below is an attempt to visualize the differences between seasons. Each box represents a player. The area of the box is the percent of the salary cap allocated to that player. You can see that the Kane and Toews boxes have become bigger. Some names have also changed. Sharp and Saad have been traded and new players added. Some current Hawks still need to sign deals. Red boxes are forwards, yellow are defensemen, and purple are goalies.
2015-2016 salaries (as of July 12):
Expect the 2015-2016 salary chart to change as players are signed or traded.
The data comes from nhlnumbers.com. The figure used is “Cap Hit”.
Let me know if you see anything interesting.