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Blackhawks’ Corey Crawford plans to sign new contract, not retire

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The 35-year-old goaltender doesn’t see himself as a backup.

Vancouver Canucks v Chicago Blackhawks Photo by Chase Agnello-Dean/NHLI via Getty Images

Corey Crawford plans to sign a new contract and play during the 2020-21 NHL season, the Blackhawks goaltender told the media Tuesday in Ottawa.

Crawford, who is the final year of his six-year, $36 million contract that he signed in September 2013 — which includes a 10-team trade list — said he hasn’t talked with Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman about a new contract yet.

The 35-year-old Crawford is 7-13-2 with a 3.09 goals-against average, .906 save percentage and minus-2.15 goals-saved above average in 23 games this season while sharing the net with Robin Lehner. With Crawford having back-to-back seasons where he missed a significant about of time due to concussions, Bowman signed Lehner to a one-year, $5 million contract. Lehner, who will turn 29 on July 24, has been one of the league’s top goaltenders this season with a 13-7-4 record, 2.88 GAA, .923 save percentage and 13.51 GSAA.

The Blackhawks started the season alternating starts between Crawford and Lehner until December when Lehner started to truly emerge as the goaltender who gave the team the best chance to win. Crawford, however, is still interested in being the top choice in net.

If the Blackhawks commit to re-signing Lehner, it’ll likely cost them around $6 million per season and signal the end of Crawford’s playing tenure with the Blackhawks. Lehner would take over the No. 1 role, and either Collin Delia or Kevin Lankinen would emerge from the AHL as the backup.

Poll

What do you think happens with Corey Crawford before the 2020-21 NHL season?

This poll is closed

  • 54%
    Traded before the deadline
    (629 votes)
  • 7%
    Re-signs with Chicago
    (89 votes)
  • 11%
    Traded before 2020-21 season
    (129 votes)
  • 26%
    Signs elsewhere
    (304 votes)
1151 votes total Vote Now