When the Chicago Blackhawks traded hometown native Vinnie Hinostroza in 2018, it came as a shock to most of the Chicago faithful. Coming off of a 2017-2018 season Hinostroza played in 50 games for the Hawks while tallying 7 goals and 18 assists for a total of 25 points. It’s safe to say the city didn’t want to see him head off to Arizona for the following 2018-2019 campaign with the Coyotes where he totaled a career-high 39 points.
Hinostroza played the following couple of seasons with the Yotes before signing with the Florida Panthers ahead of the 2021 season. Appearing in just 9 games for the Panthers it became apparent that Hinostroza was fed up with the day-to-day uncertainties of being in and out of the lineup.
The 27-year-old winger felt he had a lot left in the tank in regards to his NHL career and it was only a matter of time until he got back out onto the ice full time and made his mark. On Friday, April 2nd, Vinnie got his wish which was a chance to return home where he belongs and on the ice for the black and red.
Starting in his first game for the Hawks, hosting the Dallas Stars on April 6th, Hinostroza got right back on track with an assist and point to make his presence felt. Since then he hasn’t looked back. In 9 games with Chicago in the month of April, he has scored 2 goals and found his teammates 6 times, nearly averaging as many points as appearances while also recording a clutch assist to teammate Brandon Hagel in last Friday’s must-win game against Nashville.
You have to wonder, has anyone in the NHL been as hot as 28? Hinostroza is currently playing on the 1 year, 1 million dollar deal he signed back in October with Florida but will be a free agent to conclude the 2021 season. With what he’s been able to accomplish in his short time here in Chicago this year, the Hawks should make a push to make sure the 7-year vet remains in the lineup for next season.
As a team looking to improve and grow, who better to turn to than a guy who was born and raised in Chicago playing for his favorite childhood team with playoff and Stanley Cup experience. As it doesn’t look like the Hawks will make a push for the Stanley Cup this season, Chicago will need to consider keeping long-time players at the hip as it could be their last ride before a complete rebuild.
They may want to stick with long-time players who possess character, commitment, and the original Blackhawks winning culture in the locker room to bring back the roots of championship teams like they once had in their 10’, 13’, and 15’ Cup runs.