By PowerPlayCJ @powerplaywithcj on July 14, 2014
With NBA superstar LeBron James leaving the tropical sunshine of Miami to return home to Cleveland, he became the latest athlete to make the journey home. These NHL players would look amazing in their home uniforms, and in many cases would make those hometown teams contenders in the way LeBron has with the Cavs.
The Predators rookie, and heir to the throne of best American defenseman in the league, spent much of youth hockey career in Dallas. The thought of him someday teaming up with Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn to form a “Big 3” makes LeBron’s new trio in Cleveland look weak.
While he’s had some bad experiences in Buffalo, the hometown would surely welcome the Hawks sniper back with open arms. It's a long shot due to his new long-term deal with Chicago, but as they say, “even Gretzky was traded.”
The Michigan native has become a star in Orange County, but suiting up for the Red Wings is what he dreamed of as a youth. Fowler patrolling Detroit’s blue line like Nicklas Lidstrom once did would surely be one of the Wings’ most memorable homecomings. For what it’s worth, both Jimmy Carson and Mike Modano are still their least memorable homecomings.
“Looch” won a Memorial Cup with the Vancouver Canucks, and then the Stanley Cup in Vancouver with the Bruins, showing just how much winning he’s done in the city. Having said that, much like Kane, Lucic has had some issues in his hometown and has voiced his negative opinion on returning to Vancouver Canucks.
The former Pittsburgh Hornet was a star player in Western Pennsylvania, and would surely look great alongside either Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin. With Saad’s entry-level contract up after next season and the Blackhawks having a plethora of big-money contracts on the books, never say never.
The Flyers captain grew up in Orleans near Ottawa, and would look good taking Jason Spezza’s spot on the team’s top line. He has had some issues in his hometown, making this reunion a long shot of all long shots.
The Long Beach native grew up a Kings fan and would surely look good speeding through the ice at the Staples Center. The young winger is going to be a big part of San Jose’s future, so suffice it to say he won’t be leaving NorCal for his Southern California roots anytime soon.
The Bruins have never had a Boston-area born star, and Coyle would not only fit that quote, but the bruising power forward would also epitomize the “Big Bad Bruins”. With his contract up after next, the Bruins could sign the restricted free agent to an offer sheet -- unless the Wild lock him up first.
The Manitoba native has signed a long-term deal to remain with the Blackhawks, but the thought of him joining the Winnipeg Jets is at least intriguing. With the money and Stanley Cups being won in Chicago, it is safe to say this won't happen.
According to writer Adam Proteau, Stamkos might be willing to ditch the tropics of Tampa for his hometown Maple Leafs when his contract expires in 2016. While it is still a ways off, the thought of having a local product suit up in Toronto and possibly end the Leafs' nearly 50-year Cup drought is enough to keep people talking.
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