Corey Crawford was “devastated” when general manager Stan Bowman told him that the Blackhawks would not sign him again on Thursday.
Selected in the second round (No. 52 overall) in the 2003 NHL Draft, the 35-year-old goalscorer is a two-time Stanley Cup champion and ranks third in wins in Blackhawks history.
“I was very disappointed about not returning to Chicago,” Crawford said during a video conference call on Saturday. He said, ‘I have known my whole career. They just wanted to go a different way. “
Bowman said the Blackhawks are letting younger players compete, and they’ll have goalkeeper Malcolm Subban – who re-signed Friday for a two-year, $ 1.7 million deal – and Colin Delia and Kevin Lankinan next season Introduced number 1 for.
“The message to Corey and everyone is that we’ve decided that we have some young goalkeepers in Chicago that we believe, like Corey [in 2010]. We have some young goals in Lankin and Delia, which we have not given a real opportunity. Where we are going, the NHL is relying more and more on young players. We are going to embrace moving forward.
According to Mark Lazarus, the Blackhawks offered Crawford a one-year deal for $ 3.5 million Athletic. Crawford mentioned the offer as around $ 3 million. If Crackford could be offered up front, if forward Jack Smith (back) was healthy, which makes him eligible for a purchase. It will free up approximately $ 2 million for the next season.
“There just wasn’t that much conversation,” Crawford said. “We thought there would be more. I think it was at $ 3 [million]. We didn’t really move back and forth, so it just ended. There is not much I can say about it.
“I don’t think it was necessary (word). We just haven’t had that much conversation. It was all really. I really can’t say more about it. Let’s leave it there.”
Crawford said he spoke with Bowman, then his family and his longtime peers such as Jonathan Toes, Patrick Kane, Brent Seabrook, Duncan Keith, Andrew Shaw and others.
“For me, it was very heartwarming, very emotional after that, talking to some players and obviously my family and stuff,” Crawford said.
He exposed Shaw as someone who talked to him about what it’s like to be traded to Chicago. Shaw was dealt to the Canadiens on 24 June 2016 for two 2016 second-round elections (Alex DeBrinat and Chad Crys).
“I think everyone was very surprised,” Crawford said. “But we’ve done this before with Shaw [Niklas] Hazelmerson and some others throughout the year. I mean, that’s the game. I never thought I was going to be a part of that, but here we are, so it’s time to move on.
“It’s obviously hard to get away and go somewhere else. I was talking to Shazzi about it. It was difficult for him to leave. I finally understand what that sounds like. “
Crawford wanted to play his entire career with the Blackhawks, but instead he became an unrestricted free agent and signed a two-year, $ 7.8 million deal ($ 3.6 million in year one and $ 4.2 million in year two) with the Devils. Done. He said that New Jersey was quickly interested in signing him.
“This is a team with a ton of youth skills,” Crawford said. “They are up and coming, this is a team I am excited to be a part of. I want to help Jersey win the hockey game and the goal is to win a championship.”