Today, the Chicago Blackhawks wrapped up their annual prospect camp, a five-day event that saw 64 NHL hopefuls don the red, white and black, taking part in five scrimmages, as well as numerous on and off-ice drills.
With arguably one of the best prospect pools in the entire NHL, it was easy to get excited to see the Blackhawks’ future all gathered in one place. Among the group were 22 free-agent invitees, joining 2014 and 2013 Blackhawks draft-picks, and roster players from their AHL and ECHL affiliates, the Rockford IceHogs and Toledo Walleye.
Besides the obvious benefits of on-ice development for the players involved, the camp gave Joel Quenneville and Blackhawks’ coaching staff a feel for the players that may be under their watch in the coming years, and GM Stan Bowman and his management team a chance to take stock of the Blakchawks’ system, and devise a plan for improvement in the future.
Here is a list of the Blackhawks’ prospects that attended the camp:
Alex Broadhurst: Broadhurst spent last season with the IceHogs in the AHL. He quickly became one of the ‘Hogs top guns, and was relied on to put up the points night in, and night out. He finished the year with 45 points.
Chris Calnan: Calnan, the Blackhawks’ 3rd-round pick in 2012, played his first season of college hockey among other Blackhawks’ prospects at Boston College this year, where he recorded 13 points in 37 games.
Matthew Carey: Carey was the Blackhawks’ big free-agent signing out of college back in March, and he played two regular-season games with the big club, recording his first NHL goal in the process. The left winger is expected to be a staple with the IceHogs next season.
Phillip Danault: Danault was the Blackhawks’ first-round pick at 26th overall in 2011, and spent his first season at the AHL level last year. He put up 26 points and was a solid +11 in 72 games with the ‘Hogs last year.
Ryan Hartman: The Chicago native was drafted by the Blackhawks at #30 overall last year, and spent his 19-year old season with the Plymouth Whalers of the OHL, before joining the IceHogs. In Plymouth, he scored 25 goals and 58 points.
John Hayden: Hayden was a third-rounder with the Blackhawks in 2013, and he put up 16 points with Yale in 2013-14.
Vincent Hinostroza: The Chicago-born center was a staple with Notre Dame of the Hockey East conference in 2013-14, with 32 points in 34 games.
Matt Iacopelli: Iacopelli was Chicago’s third-round pick at this years’ draft, after being passed over in 2012 and 2013. He put up 63 points in 58 games with the Muskegon Lumberjacks of the USHL last season.
Luke Johnson: Johnson, the Blackhawks’ fifth-round selection one year ago, played his first season of college hockey with UND in 2013-14, putting up 21 points in 42 games.
Anthony Louis: Louis was drafted one round after Johnson in 2013, and spent last season with Miami University, playing against the aforementioned fellow prospect at the college level. He put up 25 points in 36 games this season.
Mark McNeill: McNeill was solid in his first professional season, with the Rockford IceHogs. The 2011 #18 overall pick was an offensive contributor all year long, and finished with 37 points in 76 games.
Fredrik Olofsson: Olofsson was traded mid-way through the 2013 season from the Green Bay Gamblers to the Chicago Steel of the USHL, and finished with 21 points in 52 games.
Jack Ramsey: Ramsey was the 208th overall pick back in June, and most recently spent time with the Penticton Vees of the BCHL, where he put up 25 points in 57 games.
Dennis Rasmussen: Rasmussen played overseas in Sweden, where he put up 40 points for Vaxjo HC in 52 games. He was one of the oldest players invited to camp, at 24.
Garret Ross: Ross was a pleasant surprise for the Blackhawks and Rockford IceHogs in 2013-14, where he followed fellow rookie McNeill with 34 points in 74 games.
Nick Schmaltz: The Blackhawks traded up to get Schmaltz at the 2o14 draft at 22nd overall, after the 18-year old had a breakout season with Green Bay of the USHL. He put up 63 points in 55 games with the Gamblers last season.
Dylan Sikura: The Blackhawks’ 6th-round selection in 2014, Sikura recorded 64 points in 41 games with the Aurora Tigers of the OJHL this past season.
Beau Starrett: Another 2014 draft pick Starrett went 88th overall to the ‘Hawks after being one point shy of a point-per-game rate with the South Shore Kings of the USPHL.
Teuvo Teravainen: The Blackhawks’ top prospect made the move to North America mid-season in 2013-14, and joined the Blackhawks before lending a helping hand to the Rockford IceHogs as they tried for a playoff push. He scored 2 goals in 5 games at the AHL level.
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Mathieu Brisebois: Brisebois was acquired mid-season along with David Rundblad from the Arizona Coyotes, and finished the season with the IceHogs, where he put up 7 points in 13 games.
Adam Clendening: The ‘Hawks top defensive prospect was the IceHogs offensive leader in 2013-14, with 59 points in 74 games, in his sophomore AHL campaign.
Carl Dahlstrom: Dahlstrom was the Blackhawks’ second-round selection in the 2013 draft, and spent last season in Sweden with Linkopings HC. The 6-foot-4 defenseman was an impressive sight among the young group, weighing in at 211 pounds.
Dillon Foiurnier: Fournier was the ‘Hawks second-round pick in 2014, and spent last season with the Rouyn-Noroada Huskies of the QMJHL, recording 32 points in 36 games.
Sam Jardine: Jardine was the Blackhawks’ sixth-rounder back in 2011, and most recently played for Ohio State in the Big Ten conference, putting up 13 points in 36 games.
Stephen Johns: The Blackhawks’ 2010 2nd-rounder attended his fifth prospect camp this week, after his final season with Notre Dame, where he put up 20 points in 40 games before scoring 5 points for the IceHogs in an eight-game stint.
Nick Mattson: Mattson was the 180th overall pick at the 2010 NHL Draft, and just finished his third season with UND, where he had 23 points in 40 games.
Robin Norell: Norell had five points in 22 games overseas with Djurgardens IF in Sweden this season, after being selected in the fourth round of the 2013 NHL Draft.
Michael Paliotta: The Blackhawks’ third-rounder in 2011 wrapped up his third season with the University of Vermont, which saw him score 5 goals and add 22 assists in 38 games.
Paul Phillips: The 20-year old played his first season with the Colorado Eagles of the ECHL in 2013-14, with 10 points in 44 games.
Robin Press: Press played for Sotertalje SK’s U20 club in 2013-14, where he had 15 points in 51 games.
Luc Snuggerud: Snuggerud was a fifth-round pick in this year’s draft, and put up 59 points in 44 games at the US High School level in 2013-14.
Trevor Van Riemsdyk: The brother to current NHL-er James had 23 points in 26 games with his third season at U of New Hampshire.
Mac Carruth: Carruth was up and down between the IceHogs and Walleye this season, and had a 2-2-1 record at the AHL level this season.
Ivan Nalimov: The six-foot-four goaltender spent the past season with St. Petersburk SKA overseas, and was a force to behold in net, at 213 pounds.
Kent Simpson: Simpson bounced from the AHL level to a brief stint with the Blackhawks as back-up to Antti Raanta, playing in his first NHL game in the process. He was 11-14-1 with the ‘Hogs this season.
Matt Tomkins: Tomkins was 6-7-2 with Ohio State University in 2013-14, and was the 199th overall selection by the Blackhawks in 2012.
Skylar’s Top Five:
These five prospects stood out the most at training camp, and for nearly all Blackhawks fans, they are starting to become household names.
#5: John Hayden
Hayden found instant chemistry with 2014 first-round pick Nick Schmaltz in the first scrimmage of the week, and was consistent all five days. A strong skater, and smart with the puck, Hayden could have a shot to make the Blackhawks’ main camp in the fall.
#4: Stephen Johns
The hype surrounding Stephen Johns has been slowly building since his selection in the 2010 draft, and now that his fourth college season is over, it is to be decided if he is able to crack the Blackhawks’ roster, or spend next season at the AHL level.
#3: Nick Schmaltz
The Blackhawks traded up for this prospect at this year’s draft, and he did not disappoint over the week. Schmaltz was dynamic with and without the puck, and played a full 200-foot game with some nice offensive touch each and every day.
#2: Adam Clendening
Clendening is following up on a stellar season with the IceHogs, and if his performance at camp was any indication, he could have a shot to don the Indian Head this season. His poise with the puck was uncanny, and with an offensive mind like him, he could certainly make a case for the Blackhawks in the fall
#1: Teuvo Teravainen
The Blackhawks’ top prospect is that for good reason. Teravainen was a man among boys on the ice this week, coupling smart two-way play with a flash that only certain Finland natives possess, and come around once every… 20 years or so. Although Brad Richards may have taken his spot on the Blackhawks this year, a full season with the IceHogs will do the organization wonders with his development.
After five days of Blackhawks’ hockey, one thing is certain: The ‘Hawks won’t be going anywhere in the next two, three, or five years with a prospect pool as deep and mature as the one that hit the ice this week.