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Chicago Blackhawks lead NHL in scouts

They have 25 listed - which is more than any other team.

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The Chicago Blackhawks clearly have money to spend; look no further than just how top-heavy their lineup is. The salary cap prevents them - and every other team - from simply throwing money at every player, though.

But that doesn't mean they still don't have money to spend. There are just other ways they can do it - such as by employing the most scouts in the league.

This list doesn't necessarily line up with success - right below Chicago are the Columbus Blue Jackets, Vancouver Canucks, and Winnipeg Jets, none of whom have had particularly good years as of late - but it does point towards Chicago's willingness to spend to find talent.

And considering their top-heavy lineup, it's something they have to do. Not even just in finding undrafted free agents other teams were pursuing like Artemi Panarin, but in just doing plain smart drafting overall. Their first pick this year was Alex DeBrincat, one of the top scorers in the CHL who was passed over because of his size. They targeted Gustav Forsling, who looks prime to enter the NHL sooner rather than later. And these players either have, or will, come cheap for their first few years in the NHL: something the Blackhawks need.

Smart scouting is one of the machines that keeps the Blackhawks rolling. And while quality doesn't necessarily dictate quantity, if you have more resources on hand than, say, Florida, you might as well use them.