Blackhawks defenseman Steve Montador hopes to return before postseasonContinue reading.
Montador on waivers, could be headed to Rockford
The Blackhawks put defenseman Steve Montador on waivers on Monday, according to multiple reports. Montador, who has played just one game (March 27 of last year) since suffering a concussion last February, has been skating with the team for the last couple of weeks and is getting close to returning.
The move could be to simply get Montador a conditioning stint with the team’s AHL affiliate in Rockford. But the Hawks didn’t need to put him on waivers to do that — a 14-day loan to an AHL team for a conditioning assignment is allowed under the collective bargaining agreement. So the Hawks could be hoping to keep Montador in the minors beyond two weeks. If Montador is claimed, the Hawks are off the hook for his contract. He’s currently in the second year of a four-year deal worth $2.75 million a year.
Montador said on Friday that he was open to the idea of a stint in Rockford, but that he was ready and willing to play for the Hawks when called upon.
“The competitor in me would say for sure,” Montador said. “The toughest thing is we’ve all heard everyone say, you can’t get into game shape until you play in games. And you know our practice schedule this season, it’s tough really to do that. While I would say yes, I doubt he’d want to put me in there, anyway. But if he came in right now I’d say [hell] yeah.”
On Sunday, Joel Quenneville said “we’ll see” when asked if Montador could be sent down. Offseason additions Michal Rozsival and Sheldon Brookbank have fared well in the sixth defenseman spot in Montador’s absence.
“We’ve got eight defensemen here and everybody’s played pretty well,” he said. “Right now he’s waiting his turn to get into the lineup.”