Blackhawks Will Match Hjalmarsson Offer; Stan Bowman Calls Him 'Big Part Of Our Success'

The Hawks will keep Niklas Hjalmarsson. For more, please visit Second City Hockey.

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3 Total Updates since July 9, 2010
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Report: Blackhaws to Match Sharks' Offer For Hjalmarsson

ESPN Chicago is reporting that the Blackhawks are readying to match the San Jose Sharks’ four-year, $14 million offer to defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson. If they do so, it could have implications on whether the team can retain star goalie Antti Niemi.

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Hjalmarsson Has Not Yet Heard From Blackhawks

Via tweet from Adam Jahns, Sun-Times beat writer:

When I spoke with Kevin Epp, Hjalmarsson’s agent, an hour ago, he was yet to hear from the #Blackhawks. He does expect to hear from them.

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Blackhawks' Niklas Hjalmarsson Signs Offer Sheet With Sharks; Four Years, $14 Million

Via NHL.com:

The San Jose Sharks will force the defending Stanley Cup champions to make another tough monetary decision.

The Sharks signed restricted free agent defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson to a four-year, $14 million offer sheet on Friday. The Blackhawks will have seven days to match the offer.

Hjalmarsson, 23, was a valuable member of Chicago's first Cup winner since 1961. In his first full NHL season, he registered 2 goals, 17 points and a plus-9 rating in 77 regular-season games. He then added 1 goal, 8 points and a plus-9 rating in 22 postseason games.

The article says the Hawks will get San Jose's first and third round picks in the 2011 draft if they don't match the offer. It may come down to choosing between Hjalmarsson and Antti Niemi, who is also due for a large pay increase, to fit under the salary cap.

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