Hawks put disappointing Samsonov on waivers

Published12/31/2007 12:14 AM

A day after Blackhawks coach Denis Savard pronounced that "there's no room" on the ice for underachieving forward Sergei Samsonov, it appears there's no room in the organization either for the veteran, who was officially placed on waivers.

Samsonov most likely will clear waivers today since few teams would be willing to take on his $3.5 million salary and his lack of production, but Savard is hoping there is a taker.


"I'm sure if someone picks him up, he'll be able to help them if he's put in the right spot," Savard said.

Samsonov, the eighth overall choice by Boston in the 1997 draft, came to the Hawks from Montreal in exchange for Jassen Cullimore and Tony Salmelainen over the summer. The hope was he could regain his form of old and provide a veteran presence on a young Hawks team.

Never happened.

After starting the season as a top-six forward, Samsonov's ice time quickly faded. He ended up playing in only 23 games, garnering a total of 4 points.

"The first couple of games I thought he was OK," Savard said. "I was going to give him a chance through 20 games, see where he was at. He's played all right. It's pretty hard to play him ahead of the guys who are the top six right now."

If Samsonov clears waivers, he will either report to Rockford, rejoin the Hawks or perhaps be released outright.

Danny boy: On a personal scouting trip last week to Rosemont to catch the Hawks' AHL affiliate Rockford take on the Wolves, Denis Savard came away impressed with one player in particular: defenseman Danny Richmond.

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Just a couple of days later, the defenseman was back up with the parent club and a noticeable presence in just over 15 minutes of ice time against Los Angeles.

"Danny Richmond, I thought he played well," Savard said. "He showed a lot of character."

Oh so close: Jack Skille, making his NHL debut Sunday, almost made it really a night to remember by scoring his first NHL goal in the second period on a rebound of a Rene Bourque shot. Unfortunately for Skille, his backhander dinged off the crossbar.

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