It's a move many Blackhawks fans have hoped would happen, but could it be about to become a reality?
Patrick Sharp, a three-time Stanley Cup winner with the Blackhawks and a free agent after two seasons with the Dallas Stars, could reportedly be making a return to Chicago when NHL free agency begins Saturday, per TSN's Bob McKenzie.
Don't be surprised if UFA Patrick Sharp returns home to Chicago Blackhawks tomorrow. CGY, amongst others, had substantial interest.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 1, 2017
Sharp spent 10 seasons in a Blackhawks uniform and was a key part of the franchise's resurgence. Four times during his decade in Chicago he scored 30 or more goals in a single season.
Sharp's offensive production in his two years in Dallas wasn't what it was during his highest points with the Blackhawks. He scored 20 goals and tallied 35 assists during the 2015-16 season and last year scored just eight goals with 10 assists in only 48 games.
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The glory days are a big reason fans have wanted him back in the fold, but they should remember that bringing members of previous Cup-winning teams back hasn't always worked in the recent past. The returns of Brian Campbell and Johnny Oduya last season brought mixed results. Though there are high hopes with this offseason's return of Brandon Saad.
As is the case with any move the Blackhawks make, finances will play a big role. The team has already jettisoned key players this offseason and is once more engaged in a seemingly annual battle with the salary cap.
Hawks have been hesitant to this in part because $ would be tough to figure out ... unless Sharp took a discount https://t.co/YZAU89GIKS— Chris Hine (@ChristopherHine) July 1, 2017
We'll see what happens tomorrow. I've been told repeatedly that Sharp absolutely wants to come back. Question is whether Hawks want it, too.— Mark Lazerus (@MarkLazerus) July 1, 2017