Bowman wouldn't mind seeing Seabrook tweak off-season program

 
 
Updated 4/12/2019 9:17 AM
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  • Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook said training last off-season went "really good," and that he'd do the same this off-season.

      Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook said training last off-season went "really good," and that he'd do the same this off-season. John Starks | Staff Photographer

The information that comes out of the Blackhawks' locker clean-out day could fill a small novel.

So instead of socking you with everything at once, I thought it would be a good idea to break up the leftover highlights from what was said at the United Center on Sunday.

Here is the first of two parts:

Mix it up?

One of the more interesting comments by general manager Stan Bowman came when asked to evaluate Brent Seabrook's season. Bowman more than hinted he'd like to see his veteran defenseman change his off-season conditioning program.

"Jonathan Toews is a good example," Bowman said. "Jonathan trained a little differently in preparation for this year and it certainly paid off. So I (haven't had) the conversations with Brent yet on what his summer training plan is going to be, but I think -- especially as an older player -- that's where you make your biggest strides."

Asked if he's going to do anything differently, Seabrook said: "I'm not going to shake anything up, no. I lost my trainer … so last year was my first summer with (the Blackhawks') Paul Goodman and I thought it went really good, and (I) felt good coming into this season. Continue doing that."

Seabrook (5G, 23A) saw his ice time plummet late in the season. The soon-to-be 34-year-old averaged 19 minutes, 46 seconds in his first 61 games, and 16:41 in his last 17.

Extension time?

Alex DeBrincat has become one of the most lethal snipers in the game, scoring 69 goals in his first two seasons. The 21-year-old will be a restricted free agent after in July 2020, and it would seem like Stan Bowman would like to get an extension done sooner rather than later.

But when I posed that question, Bowman said such talk is "really premature."

He later added: "It's too early to say whether we're going to sign him leading into his (final) year or at the end of his contract. That's a discussion we'll have with his agent. Sometimes agents want to get it done quickly, sometimes they don't."

DeBrincat, whose cap hit is only $778,333, said he'd like to get something done, "but there's a lot of different things that go into it, and I don't really know what goes into it, to be honest."

It will be interesting to see if the parties agree to a maximum eight-year deal or go with something like a 5-6 year contract. DeBrincat figures to command around $7 million-$8 million a season.

Strome sticking around:

Alex DeBrincat's decision to spend last off-season training in Chicago with Paul Goodman ended up paying huge dividends. He was stronger with the puck, saw the ice better and was a much more consistent force in his sophomore season.

Now it looks like good buddy Dylan Strome is going to do the same thing.

"I'll definitely be in Chicago a majority of the summer," said Strome, who had 17 goals and 34 assists in 58 games with the Hawks. "This is where I want to spend the rest of my career.

"I'll take some time off, but definitely looking forward to the summer and more forward to next year."

Strome will be a restricted free agent after next season.

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