Saturday, December 5, 2015

Tikhonov Placed On Waivers, Possible Return For Bickell?

Viktor Tikhonov was placed on waivers today by the Chicago Blackhawks today.

Tikhonov, returned to the NHL this year after spending the last 4 years playing in the KHL.  He was originally drafted by the Phoenix (Arizona) Coyotes as the 28th overall pick in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.  He spent a single season with the Coyotes under, then Head Coach, Wayne Gretzky.

Tikhonov hasn't registered a point in 11 games this year with the Hawks.  Coach, Joel Quenneville has made him a healthy scratch for the last 10 of 11 games.  With Tikhonov's salary (1 yr./ $1.04 million) being a small contract, it could attract another NHL team to claim him.  If that occurs, it could eventually lead to the return of Bryan Bickell, up from the Rockford IceHogs.

Bickell, 29, found himself being sent down to the Blackhawks' AHL affiliate due to a couple of reasons.  One, his play was still suffering as it did at the end of last year when he was slowed down with vertigo issues.  This year, he played in 7 games with the Hawks and did not have a point, and had a +/- rating of a (-3).  Two, his $4 million salary cap hit was a problem for the cap-stricken Blackhawks, who currently right now, is only $39,000 under the salary cap, as per General Fanager.

While in Rockford, Bickell seems to have found his game again.  In 12 games with the IceHogs, Bickell has 14 points (7G 7A) and is a +6.  The Blackhawks could use his physical play, but more importantly, could use some more scoring since the Panarin-Anisimov-Kane line is generating 48% of the goals scored for the team (34 of 71 goals).


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