The 23-year-old forward has been involved in trade talks with the Buffalo Sabres over the last week.
Chicago Blackhawks forward Dylan Strome is currently on the trade market and wouldn’t cost a hefty price, according to NHL Network Insider Elliotte Friedman. On Thursday, Friedman joined WGR550 The Instigators, a Buffalo, New York radio station, and was asked about Strome’s availability. *Warning* Friedman’s response may cause some Blackhawks fans to have severe chest pains for an extended period of time.
This shouldn’t come as much of a shock, as Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman loves to throw away young talent before he knows what he has. Teuvo Teravainen, Phillip Danault, Henri Jokiharju, etc. The list goes on and on.
Strome did underwhelm offensively in 2019-20, as the 2015 No. 3 pick tallied only 38 points (12G, 26A) in 58 games after nearly registering a point-per-game with the Blackhawks last season (51 points in 57 games). Strome’s struggles could be due to his inconsistent role in the lineup, though. Blackhawks coach Jeremy Colliton never kept Strome on the same line and frequently moved him from center to wing, for whatever reason. Colliton also split up the duo of DeBrincat and Strome for the majority of the year after tremendous success together in 2018-19.
Besides adapting to the transition from center to wing, Strome also dealt with a gruesome ankle injury in the second half of the season. Prior to the injury, Strome had 10 goals and 20 assists in 40 games. But after, the Mississauga, Ontario native recorded just eight points (2G, 6A) in the final 18 games before the season was “paused” due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Both of Strome’s goals came in the same game vs. Anaheim on Mar. 3 as well.
So, did Strome fail to meet the Blackhawks expectations in 2019-20? Certainly. But it would be a mistake to quit on him this early and trade him for pennies on the dollar. Strome was on pace for 61 points through the midpoint of the season, which is likely what his offensive ceiling will be. If it weren’t for a serious injury and sporadic position changes, these trade talks would seem foolish. Strome just turned 23 on Mar. 7 and has shown flashes of brilliance in a top-six center role.
The only way a trade makes sense is if the Blackhawks acquired a high first-round pick in return, but after hearing Friedman discuss the situation on the radio, it seems like Bowman would suffice for even less. Go figure.
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