I don't think anyone wants to leave Chicago right now, be it Saad or someone else. But a couple of all-stars and 21 million tied up in two players under a $71 million salary cap says guys are going to have to move, like it or not. Saad is an RFA, the Hawks don't have to pay him THAT much really. But if they don't, he's likely to walk once he reaches UFA, winning team or not.
Loyalty is a dead concept. The "home town discount" is going to amount to far less than $1 million/year difference. Rest assured if he gets a bridge deal at $2.5 or so, it'll be harder to sign him after that two beyond his two remaining RFA years. Every team in the league wants Saad. While I don't think anyone will offer sheet him with a ridiculous offer because of the compensation associated with high end deals, it still might happen. But an unsatisfactory deal, economic reality be damned, isn't going to sit well if the Leafs come calling two years down the road offering $6/7 million per. Chicago just can't afford that.
Toews+Kane+Hossa+Shaw+Seabrook+Keith+Hjalmarsson+Crawford = nearly $50 million dollars in salary next year. It's going to be hard to move Bickell, but easy to move Sharp. But even discounting those two if they're moved, you've got 8 guys on a 23 man roster making $50 million. Teravainen is a bargain, but if you don't get much for Bickell or Sharp or Oduya (well you won't get anything here because he's UFA but it'll leave a big hole) or Versteeg in return, it won't be quite as pretty. As it currently shows, Chicago has $7 million in cap space and 10 guys unsigned. Eep!
Again, great organization right now. Really run well, some absolute top end talent spread throughout the positions. Don't think you could find a guy that wouldn't want to go there. Oh, oh. Salary Cap.
No horse in this race, but this is dead on. Most guys play for two reasons, the money and the glory. With "glory" checked off the bucket list, it comes down to money. Sports fans tend to over romanticize the concept of players turning their noses up at making big dollars playing for a loser. Of course, the inverse is true when a player is at the end of their prime with no title to show for it, they sometimes take a lesser deal to play for a team that can realize championship dreams.