RUMOR: Chicago Blackhawks sign free-agent 3x cup champion Phil Kessel

Published December 8, 2023 at 1:46 PM

The prospect of Phil Kessel joining the Chicago Blackhawks is gaining momentum, and it's not just a rumor—it makes perfect sense for both parties involved.

Kessel, a true living legend in the hockey world, is known for his unique blend of enigmatic personality and top-tier talent, making him a beloved figure among fans. With an illustrious career featuring 1,286 games played, 413 goals, and 992 points, Kessel is a three-time Stanley Cup Champion and holds the active NHL Ironman streak with an impressive 1,064 consecutive games played.

Despite reaching the age of 36, Kessel is still a free agent after contributing to the Vegas Golden Knights' recent Stanley Cup victory. The journey to free agency wasn't without its challenges, as Kessel found himself benched during the postseason by Vegas. However, his stat line of 14 goals and 36 points in a full 82-game season is nothing to scoff at.

Turning 36 before the upcoming season has a silver lining for Kessel—he's now eligible to sign a one-year minimum contract with bonuses. This affordability makes him an attractive option for teams managing their salary cap, and this is where the Blackhawks enter the picture.

For the Blackhawks, bringing Kessel on board offers a golden opportunity. With plenty of cap space to spare, Kessel could play a significant role in the top-nine forwards group, providing leadership and a veteran presence. This move aligns with the team's rebuilding phase, especially with promising young talents like Connor Bedard and Lukas Reichel on the roster.

The Blackhawks, despite likely landing a top-ten pick in the upcoming NHL Draft, stand to benefit from Kessel's experience and on-ice prowess. His potential impact extends beyond statistics, as his positive influence in the locker room could prove invaluable during the team's transition.

As Kessel eagerly awaits his return to the NHL, insiders have hinted at close calls with contracts in recent weeks. The buzz surrounding his potential signing with the Blackhawks adds an extra layer of excitement to the upcoming season, as fans eagerly anticipate the dynamic veteran's impact on the ice and within the Chicago locker room. Stay tuned for what could be a game-changer for the Blackhawks.
December 8   |   275 answers
RUMOR: Chicago Blackhawks sign free-agent 3x cup champion Phil Kessel

Should the Blackhawks sign Kessel for a league-minimum deal?

Yes17965.1 %
No3813.8 %
Why not?5821.1 %
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