(CBS) The Blackhawks have traded forward Andrew Shaw to the Montreal Canadiens for two second-round draft picks in this year’s draft.
Chicago will get the 39th and 45th picks overall from Montreal.
There had been some speculation the Blackhawks could re-sign Shaw after dealing the talented Teuvo Teravainen and underperforming-and-expensive Bryan Bickell to the Carolina Hurricanes in a salary dump last week, opening up nearly $5 million in cap space. However, Shaw — a restricted free agent — reportedly was seeking a $4.5 million annual salary in any contract extension, which apparently proved too steep for Chicago.
In Shaw, who turns 25 in July, the Blackhawks lose a gritty, hard worker who’s versatile enough to play on several lines and also the special-teams units. Shaw had 34 points (14 goals, 20 assists) in 78 games for the Blackhawks last season. He’s also been a part of two Stanley Cup winners, in 2013 and 2015, when he had 12 points in 23 postseason games.
“Andrew’s at his best in the big games,” Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman said in late April. “He’s a heart and soul player, really competitive.”
At times, Shaw has also been a polarizing figure. In addition to antagonizing opponents with his play, he had an ugly, regrettable moment when he uttered a homophobic slur toward an official late in a Game 4 loss to the Blues in a first-round series in April. Shaw was then suspended for Game 5 and apologized for using the “hurtful word.”
A five-year veteran, Shaw was selected by the Blackhawks in the fifth round of the 2011 draft.
After the trade, the Blackhawks now have 10 picks in the NHL Draft, including three in the second round (39th, 45th, and 50th overall). The first round of the draft was being conducted Friday night, while the second through seventh rounds were being held Saturday.