Blackhawks trade rumors 2015: Antti Raanta 'can be had' in trade talks, per report
The Blackhawks are open to dealing Raanta after signing Scott Darling to a long-term deal.
The Chicago Blackhawks are open to dealing goaltender Antti Raanta before the trade deadline, according to Mark Spector of Sportsnet. He says Raanta "can be had" from Chicago now that the team has signed Scott Darling to a long-term deal, which solidified its goaltending situation beyond Corey Crawford for the foreseeable future.
Raanta, 25, was recently reassigned to AHL Rockford after a poor showing replacing Crawford in a loss to the Bruins last Sunday. He will surely appeal to other teams given his solid numbers and affordable cap hit of $750,000, even though the 'Hawks ultimately opted to pursue an extension with Darling over him.
Playing in front of a good defense like the Blackhawks' certainly helped Raanta, but a .936 save percentage and 1.89 goals against average in 14 games (12 starts) show that he's got room to help someone even with some significant decline. Darling, meanwhile, has been arguably even better, posting a .938 save percentage and 1.96 goals against average over eight starts.
Given that the 'Hawks have some extra salary cap space to work with after placing Patrick Kane on long-term injured reserve, it's clear GM Stan Bowman is figuring out how to bring in reinforcements without jeopardizing the team's pipeline of talent. Dealing Raanta, who is set to hit restricted free agency this summer, could be one way of avoiding giving up several picks and/or young prospects.