Brian Campbell is officially back.
Initially signed to a mega-deal by the Chicago Blackhawks back in 2008, Campbell could only play out the first three years of his eight-year deal with Chicago. It worked out alright; he was able to help bring a Stanley Cup back to Chicago, after all! But then he became a casualty of the cap, and ended up playing out the rest of his deal in Florida.
But now, he’s back. And for the second time in a row in becoming an unrestricted free agent, Campbell chose Chicago.
He skated as a home player at the United Center for the first time in years last night. Yeah, it was preseason - but it was still Campbell in a red Hawks sweater.
Before the game, Scott Powers of The Athletic caught up with him. It was a quick interview - just three questions - in which Campbell did talk about switching back to playing the right side (he wants to be able to handle both, he said), and if his first Chicago home game in ages was of any significance to him.
Campbell did downplay it somewhat, but ultimately couldn’t deny it was at least a little meaningful:
I just think it’s significant in the way I want to get ready for the season. I think you have to take a lot of importance in these exhibition games and play them like you would in the regular season. Definitely nice to be on the ice tonight, for sure. Anytime you can play in this building in front of the crowd is great. I’m just ready to go.
It’s good to have Soupy back.