Blackhawks looking to land $30 million dollar star to pair with Bedard

Joshua Deeds
June 29, 2024  (5:15 PM)

Jake Guentzel
Photo credit: NHL Trade Rumors

The Chicago Blackhawks want to improve their top-six significantly and they're in the hunt for top-tier talent.

Which could end-up being pairing Jake Guentzel, with Connor Bedard according to Elliotte Friedman and The 32 Thoughts Podcast.

«It sounds like he's [Guentzel] available for a mid-round pick,» Friedman said. «Carolina's let everybody know that if you want to trade for his rights, it's possible for a mid-round pick.»
Guentzel's most recent deal came in 2018, where he signed a $30 Million contract with the Pittsburgh Penguins. It seems if Guentzel does test free-agency come July 1st:

«Confirmed by separate sources over the weekend,» Pagnotta said, «the Hurricanes have had discussions with Guentzel and his camp, led by agent Ben Hankinson, and the initial word is he ‘probably goes to July 1.'»

With Guentzel's last AAV being $6 Million, it appears his $8 M asking price with the Hurricanes is too much right now. Guenztel scored 25 points in 17 games with the Hurricanes and the team will lose a major producer to free-agency as a result.
During the post-season he ranked third in points on the team, scoring 9 points in 11 games.
It seems likely that the Blackhawks will have a shot at acquiring Guentzel, unlike San Jose who have been in the 74-point winger.
«I did have a couple of people say to me, San Jose is a long way away still.» Friedman further said. «When it comes to Chicago, they were like at the beginning, and then someone said to me Chicago started to make noises like they'd like to move things along a little bit here, and I don't think it's impossible that Chicago is considering this.»

With the Blackhawks plan to surround Bedard with skilled wingers, like Guentzel, his sophomore year could turn out even better than his rookie year with a Stanley Cup winner like Guentzel riding along the 1st line.
As July 1st rolls around, the situation will continue to develop if the Hurricanes don't lockdown Guentzel.