Blackhawks: Kevin Lankinen, among others, re-sign with organization
By Ryan Fedrau
Besides a few entry-level deals being signed today, minor league goalie Kevin Lankinen and Matthew Highmore re-sign with the Chicago Blackhawks.
Kevin Lankinen has rumored to be one of the goalies of the future for the Chicago Blackhawks. The 24-year-old started with the Indy Fuel and Rockford IceHogs during the 2018-19 season. The front office saw enough out of him to want two more years with Lankinen on the roster.
Matthew Highmore, 24, has been with the Blackhawks for a few seasons now. He made his NHL debut during the 2017-18 NHL season playing in 13 games, where he scored his first two goals in the NHL. After a season with the IceHogs, Highmore has returned to the Blackhawks for 36 games this season, scoring two goals and racking up four assists for six points.
Both Lankinen and Highmore have the potential to be solid players for the Blackhawks. After seeing almost a full season a play out of Highmore, I’m not sold on him. I’m more sold on the potential of Lankinen being a starting for the Blackhawks sometime soon.
You have to remember, it took Corey Crawford many years in the minors before he had his first crack at the starting role in 2011.
If Lankinen can be anything like Crawford for the next 10 seasons, Chicago has hit another home run in net. If he can’t, they’ll find someone who will be. Maybe that guy is Collin Delia.
I believe Delia and Lankinen will hold down the fort in a few seasons. They’re both young guys who are cheap. They could be the next Jonathan Bernier and James Reimer rotation. The Maple Leafs found success with those two guys, with them both getting starting jobs elsewhere in their career.
For the team’s sake, let’s hope Lankinen and Highmore can become stars for the Blackhawks. They have a lot of young potentials just sitting in the minors, hopefully, these two guys can join the fray.