Frolik To Hawks – Skille To Panthers

You didn’t need a degree in hockey logic to conclude no other general manager would value Jack Skille as much as Dale Tallon. On Wednesday evening the Hawks shipped Skille, Ice Hog Hugh Jessiman and prospect David Pacan to Florida for center Michael Frolik and goalie Alexander Salak. 

In essence two former first round draft picks were exchanged, Skille and Frolik.

As noted in Puck Daddy, Jessiman was the only first round draft pick in 2003 (12th overall), to never play in the NHL.

Skille hasn’t proven to be a NHL top six forward, most likely Tallon will give him an opportunity to play a lot of minutes. Frolik has been in the league for three seasons and has scored 21 goals two times. Frolik is only 22, and will probably be given an opportunity to play the pivot on the Hawks’ second line. 

Frolik came into the league with a lot of hype, being compared to the great Jaromir Jagr. So far Frolik hasn’t lived up to that type of billing but he is still young. Skille is a work in progress, while Frolik is a more established player. Stan Bowman acquired a big center with some offense and Tallon got a player he was always high on. Evidently Tallon didn’t value Frolik as much as the Panthers’ front office did in the past. 

Frolik could center an all Czech line with Marian Hossa and Tomas Kopecky. With the addition of Folik, Patrick Sharp can now go back to wing and could possibly play on the first line. If not Kopecky could drop down and play on the third or fourth line. 

This is a good trade for the Hawks. Skille wasn’t going to play top six minutes in Chicago and it is a better opportunity for him. The acquisition of Frolik gives Joel Quenneville more options. 

Salak is playing in the Swedish Elite League . He has a league leading .925 save percentage, with six shutouts and a 2.04 GAA.

I don’t think Bowman is done. But it should be noted Frolik is a $1,275,000 salary cap hit compared to $600,000 for Skille. Frolik will become a restricted free agent this summer.

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  1. shruew says:

    In terms of NHL roster space it was a 2 for 2 trade. Pacan didnt have an NHL contract; so no real NHL space cleared up. Frees up a spot on the unsigned rights space though.

  2. shruew says:

    Not that this necessarily means anything, but Beach, Vishnevskiy and Morin were also healthy scratches with Jessiman. I didnt realize Morin was still down there.

    • Al Cimaglia says:

      Yep…Morin was injured for a bit too.

      Don’t know if there is anything to the scratches…Beach gets scratched every now then.

      I finally had a chance to check the release from the Hawks…

      Salak is playing in the Swedish Elite League doing well. He leads all goalies with a .925 save pct.

      Pacan played at Vermont last year and currently is in the OHL with Niagara.

  3. ArlingtonRob says:

    Al,

    Not to be picky, but Hossa and Kopecky are Slovaks, while Frolik is a Czech. Close geographically, but not the same. I too like the trade, and think Salak may be the best part of the deal.

    Rob

    • djd says:

      Politically speaking, I’m not sure those two nations get along all that well either.

      • Dave Morris says:

        djd>I’ve lived in the Czech Republic and worked with/managed both Czechs and Slovaks. I can assure you Frolik, Hossa and Kopecky will be focused on puckology and not politics. ;-)

    • Al Cimaglia says:

      Thanks Rob….My geography was never great and when countries started changing names….Taht’s enough to throw me into a spin.

  4. ArlingtonRob says:

    Al,

    I’m pickin’ a nit with this, but Flolik is Czech while Hossa and Kopecky are Slovaks. Close, but now separate nations. I do like the trade and think Salak may end up making the greatest impact. Time will tell, but Frolik will likely be given ample opportunity to succeed. Let’s hope he does.

    ArlingtonRob

  5. Dave Morris says:

    Al, obviously way too early to assess this trade…but interestingly enough, the Oilers Sportsnet TV crew tonight felt the Hawks got the edge in this deal, due to Frolik.

    We’ll see…

    I watched Salak’s games with the Panthers, and he looked good technically and very composed. FLA just had too many goalie prospects (Markstrom, Plante) in addition to Vokoun and Clemmensen for Salak to really have a shot.

    So net-net, young guys get a fresh start with teams that will give them an opportunity.

    IMO Bowman is looking ahead; Frolik and Salak give them options for the future. And if Frolik can click in CHI, good news for the present.

    It also sends an important message to certain guys in Hawk jerseys who need a wake-up call…as you say, Bowman probably isn’t done yet.

  6. ArlingtonRob says:

    Sorry for the double entry. My browser crashed and thought I’d lost my post.

    Rob

  7. [...] Frolik To Hawks – Skille To Panthers | Hockey IndependentChicago may have given themselves a bit of offensive depth by prying Michael Frolik from Florida, where GM Dale Tallon gets Jack Skille, a big lug who he drafted originally when he was with the Blackhawks. [...]