Report: Blackhawks Sign Ian Mitchell to Entry Level Deal

Ian Mitchell (Photo by Sam Wasson/Getty Images)
Ian Mitchell (Photo by Sam Wasson/Getty Images) /

Chicago Blackhawks add to their defensive mix and reportedly sign top prospect to an entry-level deal.

According to multiple reports and first reported by Barstool Sports, defenseman Ian Mitchell has signed an entry-level deal with the Chicago Blackhawks and fans can now breathe a sigh of relief.

There were reports that he turned down an offer last summer as he opted to return to the University of Denver for his junior season as captain of the Pioneers. Had he returned again, he would have become a free agent and could sign with any team following the season, a possibility that made many feel uneasy.

Though it has yet to be officially announced, there’s already excitement that he’ll be in the fold next season with a strong possibility that he makes the team for opening night.

I watched the Pioneers earlier this season and wrote about what to expect from Mitchell should he choose to sign a deal at a time where there was uncertainty around it. The 21-year-old finished the season with 10 goals and 22 assists, with 16 penalty minutes and a plus-7 rating in 36 games.

In an earlier statement to Blackhawk Up, Denver’s head coach David Carle said Ian Mitchell “has been our best player all year… he’s been really good for us.”

With a defensive group that needs upgrades at the NHL level and the rise of Adam Boqvist into a consistent role, it seems that Mitchell will get every opportunity to come in and play that same type of role for the Blackhawks as he did with the Pioneers.

As much more of a two-way defender than Boqvist, still with a great amount of offensive upside, Mitchell could fit in as a top-four defenseman and play in all roles, including special teams.

Although there may be some transition time into the pro-style, college hockey has proven to prepare many players to jump right in and make an impact. Just look at Charlie McAvoy for the Boston Bruins.

Related Story. Blackhawks Sign Michal Teply to Entry-Level Deal. light

As the 2019-2020 season remains in question, the outlook for the 2020-2021 season just became much brighter.