Should Huet Stay or Should He Go?

The Orton/Grossman quarterback controversy has nothing on the goaltender controversy brewing at the United Center. The Blackhawks have two outstanding, highly-paid goalies. It's a good problem to have, but at some point, one of them will have to go.

The Blackhawks' goaltender controversy started in July, when Chicago picked up Cristobal Huet from the Capitals for more than $5 million per year. Nikolai Khabibulin, the man who had been in the goal for the Blackhawks with a four-year, $27 million contract, was still on the Blackhawks roster. The Hawks assumed they would be able to trade Khabibulin, but no one picked him up, and so the Hawks started the season with $12 million tied up in the net.

The plot thickened as the season began and Khabibulin not only played, but played well for the Hawks. Khabibulin has played much more than Huet, playing in for 740 minutes in 12 games to Huet's 7 games. They are more successful with Khabibulin in the net (7-1) then with Huet (3-3.)
All summer, the Blackhawks spoke of unloading Khabibulin, but with him racking up a 92% save rate, it makes no sense to get rid of someone who is doing their job.

The drama took another turn when Vancouver's star goalie, Robert Luongo, went down with a groin injury. Though the Canucks are relying on back-up goaltender Curtis Sanford, that might not be a long term solution if Luongo's injury keeps him out for an extended time. Will the Canucks come knocking? And if they do, will the Blackhawks unload Khabibulin or Huet?

In the meantime, only one thing matters, and that is the Blackhawks are winning. The management will need to figure out the numbers soon, but they should not sacrifice winning to balance their books.

Copyright FREEL - NBC Local Media
Contact Us