Selected: 1st overall, 2007 draft
Instead, Blackhawks select: RW Jakub Voracek (7th overall, Columbus Blue Jackets)
For different reasons than with Toews, the Blackhawks wouldn’t have nearly the level of success they’ve seen in this current era without Kane.
Still, this is a redraft, so we have to pick someone else. And Voracek seems like a really solid choice. He’s been underutilized in Philadelphia, where he’s spent the majority of his NHL career. Voracek has 460 points in 636 regular-season games, second-most among 2007’s first-round draft picks (behind Kane).
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We don’t know how well Voracek would fare in the postseason, however, since he has just 28 games of experience (compared with Kane’s 123). But we know he could’ve been an extremely capable top-six forward with the Blackhawks for some time.
Still, it’s not the same as having Kane. The reigning Hart Trophy winner sealed the Blackhawks’ first Stanley Cup win in 49 years and has been a huge part of almost all other success Chicago has had since. Again, irreplaceable.