January 9, 2019 | 10:20am ET
COULD THE HAWKS EXPLORE MOVING KEITH?
Duncan Keith, defenceman
Duncan Keith will remain a member of the Chicago Blackhawks for pretty much as long as he wants, but questions are starting to pop up over how long that truly is.
Keith, 35, has four more years left on his contract beyond this season. His salary cap hit of $5.538 million isn’t as standoffish as it may seem, as a number of teams still value what he brings to the table – it’s those extra four years that may be frightening.
Nevertheless, there is believed to be a solid amount of interest in Keith, should the Blackhawks look to move him – he currently ranks No.12 on TFP’s Top 30 Trade Watch List.
Keith owns a full no-movement clause and will have a say in where he ends up, if he accepts a move. A number of teams that would have serious interest in Keith, including the Toronto Maple Leafs, Edmonton Oilers and Vegas Golden Knights, should he hit the market, but there are also personal off-ice matters he’d have to consider, if dealt, that will factor into his decision.
To date, the Blackhawks have not approached Keith about the possibility of a trade. There is a chance Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman has a conversation with Keith in the coming weeks, if teams express significant interest – or he may wait until the off-season. Ultimately, the decision rests with Keith.
Bowman, meanwhile, will be exploring the market on a few of his players leading up to the Feb. 25 trade deadline.
It’s believed the Blackhawks have put the likes of forwards Brandon Saad and Artem Anisimov on the trade block, while pending unrestricted free agents Chris Kunitz and Marcus Kruger could be dealt in the coming weeks.
Kunitz owns a no-movement clause, while Anisimov has a 10-team trade list.