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Blackhawks eye Pacioretty, Skinner in trade talks

According to a couple of reports, that's exactly what they're doing.

Reuters 13 Jul 2018, 10:06 PM United States

In clearing up a reported $8.5 million in cap space with a seven-player trade on Thursday, the Chicago Blackhawks appeared to position themselves to add firepower to their veteran roster.

According to a couple of reports, that's exactly what they're doing.

First, The Fourth Period's David Pagnotta tweeted shortly after the trade that the team has "been in talks" with both the Montreal Canadiens about Max Pacioretty and the Carolina Hurricanes about Jeff Skinner. According to Pagnotta, with the trade complete, it's "possible these talks pick up steam now."

A little later, 670 The Score AM in Chicago's Jay Zawaski confirmed the club has discussed Skinner, but added, "this particular source had not heard the same about Pacioretty."

Earlier in the week, The Athletic's Marc Antoine Godin reported that Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin told Pacioretty, "there will be no contract negotiation and that his intention is to trade Pacioretty as soon as possible."

The Blackhawks on Thursday traded stalwart forward Marian Hossa, forward Vinnie Hinostroza, defenseman Jordan Oesterle and a third-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft to the Arizona Coyotes. In return, forward Marcus Kruger -- a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Hawks -- is returning to Chicago, along with forward MacKenzie Entwistle, minor league center Jordan Maletta, minor league defenseman Andrew Campbell and a fifth-round pick in 2019.

The Blackhawks now have more than $10 million they can use to sign the three or four players they need to fill out their roster, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

Hossa spent 19 years in the NHL. Over his career, he scored 525 goals and posted 609 assists with the Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, Atlanta Thrashers and Ottawa Senators. He had 186 goals and 229 assists in his eight seasons in Chicago.

Pacioretty, 29, has 226 goals and 222 assists in his 10-year career, all in Montreal. He has scored at least 30 goals five times, including a career-high 39 in 2013-14. Last season, however, he scored just 17 goals and had a career-worst minus-16 in 64 games. He has one season that carries a $4.5 million cap hit left on his contract.

Skinner, 26, is also coming off of a down season. Though he played in all 82 games, he scored 24 goals (his fewest since 2014-15) and registered a minus-27, worst of his career and in the bottom 15 of the league last season. He has 204 goals and 175 assists in 579 games, all with the Hurricanes.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)