So a lot of people people are upset about the Hawks losing Shaw. I was one of those people. Keyword “was”. The thing that changed my mind was his new contract with the Montreal Canadians. 6 years with a 3.9 AAV. Coming out to a cool 23.4 million. I’m happy for Shaw, he spent years with the Hawks trying his hardest night in and night out. He deserved to get paid. 24 million over 6 years though? That is a lot of time and a lot of money.
Shaw brought a lot of things to the table. One of the few guys actually willing to get down and dirty. Making the tough plays and putting his body on the line every time he stood right in front of that net. If you’ve ever watched hockey then you’ve seen the scrums in front of the net caused by players going at the goalie trying to loosen up the puck. It also brings the dangers of taking a Seabrook blast right to the face, something I would only wish upon somebody like Aidan.
Shaw is one of those guys that you love to have on your team, but hate to play against him. He’s scrappy, probably takes some cheap shots in a scrum, and will chirp your ear off (at least until he gets suspended.)
This 2 minute video pretty much sums up everything you need to know about Andrew Shaw.
So obviously with those players, like the saying goes, you want him on your team and not to be playing against him. Luckily we shipped him out of both our conference and division so we won’t be seeing too much of him.
He also isn’t an irreplaceable player. From a score sheet perspective, what he brings to the table is redirects, redirects, and more redirects. I believe I heard somewhere (using my super lucrative inside sources) that most of his practice consists of sitting in front of the net redirecting pucks. Something that honestly a lot of people could get very good at, and possibly even better than Shaw, given the practice time that he was. What it really comes down to is simple hand eye coordination and the tenacity to keep your position in front of the net.
Answer to this opening would be: Ryan Hartman
I figured the perfect opening for Hartman would be the same as his opening into the NHL. Ryan is a personal friend of mine (as in my grandma is friends with his grandma and he sometimes used to hang out with my next door neighbor) so I’m pretty in tune with his abilities. Do I think he is as good as Shaw? Hell no. But I think given time he can serve the role just fine.
That brings me to another point. Honestly how good was Shaw really? Obviously he’s a good hockey player and yadda yadda yadda, but don’t you think playing on the same line as future Hall of Famers Jonathan Toews and Marian Hossa for the better part of the season are gonna boost your stats at least a little? That is a little thing I like to call Brandon Saad Syndrome. Remember him? The guy who put up great stats on that same line, went to Columbus for 36 million over 6 years and spent a good amount of time this year on their 4th line. That is a classic overestimation of a players abilities thanks to the line they played on.
Now let’s look at what we got for him:
Going for two second round picks was a little short of what I would have liked, but that’s a classic salary dump. But then comes in the big swinging dick that is Stan Bowman to make some magic happen by picking up Alex DeBrincat. 51 goals two seasons in a row in the OHL. Overshadowed by McDavid, but a great player none the less. This kid is a beast and fits right into the Hawks play style, small guy with moves who scores a lot of goals. Sound familiar? I mean come on, just take a look at this guy:
Ummmm did you just witness 5 goals in one game? Yes, you did. I don’t care who it’s against 5 goals by a team in one game is impressive. Yes I said by a team, and this was by only one guy. And we got him! Also you think were gonna miss the fiery attitude that Shaw brought to the table?
Not when you’ve got DeBrincat spearing guys right in front of refs. This kid gives zero fucks. Thanks for the sick new prospect Andy.
Now this whole time it may seem like I’ve been bashing Shaw, and I kind of have been. Probably to make myself feel better, because I am gonna miss him as a player and a figure. I liked Shaw a lot and was sad to see him go. I wish him the best of luck. But with the money he got paid and what we got in return, it’s definitely not the worst thing in the world.