Blackhawks Top 3 Potential First Round Draft Picks

By Andrew Gregory
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Jun 30, 2013; Newark, NJ, USA; Ryan Hartman poses for a photo with general manager Stan Bowman (left) after being introduced as the number thirty overall pick to the Chicago Blackhawks during the 2013 NHL Draft at the Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

The 2014 NHL Draft will be held tonight in Philadelphia. With all of the rumors and possible trades that could happen while all 30 NHL General Managers are gathered in the same building, it makes for a very exciting draft night. Not to mention that this draft seems to be incredibly deep. All 30 first round selections have a very high potential to succeed in the NHL. There are even some players who are projected to go in the early second round who could easily be first rounders as well.

That means, that although the Blackhawks have the 27th overall selection in the first round, they could still draft a player who, in a few years, could still produce at a high level.

Hundreds of mock drafts have been made to “predict” which prospects will go to which team and why, but nobody can truly know where these players will land. Out of all of the mock drafts I’ve looked at, these are the top 3 realistic players that I would like to see in the Blackhawks prospect pool after the first round.

3. Conner Bleackley

Bleackley is one player that I haven’t seen going to one particular team in any mock draft. Every mock seemingly has him going in a different place. Some even have him going early second round. He may be the perfect pick for the Blackhawks though. If he falls past the 26th pick, the Blackhawks should definitely pull the trigger.

In 2013-14 for the Red Deer Rebels of the WHL, he had over a point a game with 22 goals and 31 assists for 53 points in 44 games and was a +13.  He was also the captain of that Rebels team which means that he has very good leadership skills. He could thrive learning under the leadership of Jonathan Toews, and I feel as though he could be a great contributor after he develops over the next 3 years.