By adding Johnny Oduya to the Blackhawks' roster, Stan Bowman increased the defensive depth of this team. That's exactly what he said he wanted to do heading into the trade deadline. While I personally don't think that Oduya was number 1, or even number 2, on the Hawks' list of desirable defensemen, it is an improvement to what they previously had on the NHL roster. However, he did nothing to improve the depth of the Hawks offensively.
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It's been said for about 2 months straight now that the Blackhawks desperately need another top 6 forward, preferably a number 2 center, if they want to become a serious contender in the playoffs this year. Yes, Bowman went ahead and traded for Brendan Morrison last month, but that wasn't nearly enough. Since be acquired by Chicago, Morrison has played in just 7 games and has no points. I think it is fair to say that his presence on the ice has done little to help this desperate team. With the trade deadline now 24 hours behind us, the Hawks' are stuck with what they've got. This was the time for Bowman and the Chicago front office to go ahead and acquire a top 6 forward, and they didn't do it. By not making a move for a top 6 forward, an unpleasant taste has been left in the mouths of all Blackhawks fans, myself included.
While Nashville went ahead and traded for Andrei Kostitsyn and Paul Gaustad, among others, the Hawks sat on their hands and did nothing. I'm sure that Stan Bowman made offers for guys like Gaustad and Derek Roy, but clearly he didn't offer enough. If the Chicago front office wanted to seriously improve the team, they could have traded for Roy, Guastad, Carter, etc. It's not that they didn't have the assets to make a trade, because they have plenty of top prospects in the system, as well as future draft picks. It's that instead of trading for proven talent and skill that would greatly help their playoff chances this year, they decided to hold onto their prospects and draft picks with the hopes that they'll have an impact on the Blackhawks NHL roster in years to come.
The bottom line is that while Nashville and other rivals of the Hawks went and made themselves better than they already were via trades at the deadline, the Hawks did next to nothing to help their chances at playing deep into the postseason this year. Their offensive depth is not good enough, their goaltending is not good enough, and their team defense is not good enough. Us Chicago fans had high hopes heading into the trade deadline thinking that Bowman might trade for a top 4 defenseman and a top 6 forward. Unfortunately, we're stuck with the team that just lost 9 games straight and is currently in the midst of 3 game losing streak without their captain.
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