Patrick Sharp rejoins Blackhawks on low-risk deal

The Chicago Blackhawks are bringing back one of the most popular players in franchise history, even if he doesn’t exactly fit one of their most pressing needs.

Winger Patrick Sharp played 679 games with the Blackhawks, scoring 239 goals and 272 assists from 2005-15. He was an integral part of three Stanley Cup championship teams before becoming another integral part of the Blackhawks’ Stanley Cup championship teams: a salary cap casualty, traded to the Dallas Stars in 2015 in a deal that brought Trevor Daley to the Blackhawks for a brief stint.

According to Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Times, Sharp is back with the Blackhawks on deal that carries a $1 million cap hit with performance bonuses. We’re still waiting on term.

He’s coming off his worst offensive season since his rookie year, an injury-filled campaign that saw him averaged just 0.17 goals per game in 48 games. He’s now three seasons removed from his last 30-goal season and is 35.

This deal is reminiscent of two trends for GM Stan Bowman. The first is the low cap hit veteran contract for a (former) star forward, like we saw when the Blackhawks signed center Brad Richards to a $1 million hit in 2014-15. (It helped that Richards was flush with New York Rangers buyout money.)

The second is an unending nostalgia trip from the Blackhawks, on which we’ve seen former Cup winners like Brian Campbell, Andrew Ladd and Johnny Oduya all return to the franchise after being cap casualties.

This offseason, we’ve already seen Brandon Saad brought back after a trade with the Columbus Blue Jackets involving Artemi Panarin. And while we would never dare question the motivations behind such moves, we’ll simply note that Panarin didn’t advance past the first round in his two seasons in Chicago while the two former linemates of captain Jonathan Toews that have been acquired in the last two weeks won multiple Cups.

Also, they don’t play defense or center. Which the Blackhawks could use help with as well.

Greg Wyshynski is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Contact him at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or find him on Twitter. His book, TAKE YOUR EYE OFF THE PUCK, is available on Amazon and wherever books are sold.

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