Toews could probably see his house from the downtown arena in Winnipeg (Photo: Jonathan Kozub/NHLI via Getty Images)
It’s no secret that the good times are over in Chicago. Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane, free agents after the 2022-23 season, are more likely than not to be traded, so if you’re going to trade Toews, sending the Winnipeg native home would make sense.
The Jets have had an offseason filled with rumors of locker room angst. The players are frustrated about missing the playoffs, and forward Pierre-Luc Dubois went so far as to go to Montreal during the NHL draft this summer, expecting a trade to the Canadiens to fall during the event. You trade the two players, and it makes sense for both teams, although Chicago might want a little extra.
Winnipeg’s 2017 first-round pick Kristian Vesalainen will play in Sweden after up-and-down times with the Jets. He was a restricted free agent this summer and was eligible by the team, but most times when something like this happens, if or when that player comes back to the NHL, it’s usually with another team. Maybe a new situation would do him good. With Chicago in full rebuild mode, playing time would be easy to come by.
Toews’ production dipped last season when he posted a career-low 37 points. He’s 34, and there’s always the possibility that he’ll hang it up after this season. Chicago gets the better player right now in Dubois, so a pick-for-round trade gives the Jets an actual second-round pick, and Chicago moves one of its two seconds to add a third pick in the third round.