Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Hossa to Skip 2018 Season

It was hinted upon, just before the Tuesday night festivities were about to take place and then it was confirmed on Wednesday morning by the club, Chicago Blackhawks forward Marian Hossa will miss the 2018 season, dealing with a progressive skin disorder, which has been made more difficult by the medications needed to treat it.

According to the release, Hossa had been dealing with this issue over the last couple of seasons, but it has got to the point where playing is not an option, which is an absolute shame, and this could be an issue which ends a very good career.

Let's think short-term for now, as we know that Hossa will miss next season and his production, 26 goals and 45 points in the 2017 season, will be removed from any fore thought at the hockey pool draft, likely opening up a spot in the lineup for some younger talent and that open spot will be right next to Patrick Kane or Jonathan Toews, which should make things even more interesting for that player.  The Blackhawks will struggle to find someone of Hossa's two-way calibre and it will have a serious impact on their record, but just how much?

The next big concern will be the salary cap, which will still get some tweaking tonight, with the expansion draft to have their grand announcement tonight, but with this injury, it is expected that Hossa will hit the Injured Reserve and if needed, which is expected, he will hit the Long Term Injured Reserve and his $5.275 million will be credited back, as the Blackhawks need in the 2018 season (and beyond).

With a 23-man roster and an injured Hossa, before any bonuses are announced from the 2017 season, I have the Hawks at $75.49 million against the cap, just that shade over the $75 million ceiling, but again, there's still lots of math to be done.  This still appears like it will have to be a creative summer for Chicago management.

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