Blackhawks: Philipp Kurashev and Michal Teply Loaned Overseas
By Dylan Terry
With the upcoming AHL and ECHL seasons still in question, the Blackhawks announced on Saturday that Philipp Kurashev and Michal Teply have also been loaned across the pond for the time being.
When the Blackhawks announced that Tim Soderlund was being loaned to Almtuna IS of Sweden on Thursday, it was expected that more prospects would be dealt overseas in the coming weeks. This assumption was confirmed today when the Hawks announced that forward Philipp Kurashev and Michal Teply would both also be heading to Europe for the unforeseeable future. Here is a little bit of a player breakdown and analysis on each prospect:
Philipp Kurashev is set to be joining HC Lugano, which plays in the top professional league in Switzerland, the National League (NLA). Kurashev was selected by the Blackhawks in the 4th round of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft (#120 Overall). The Switzerland native has a lethal shot but also has playmaking capabilities. An accurate player comparison in terms of his playstyle would be that of Evgeny Kuznetsov of the Washington Capitals.
Kurashev looks to be a promising forward in the Hawks pipeline. He spent his junior seasons playing for the Quebec Ramparts of the QMJHL, where he tallied 69 goals and 110 assists for a total of 179 points in only 183 games played. He spent this past season playing in the American Hockey League with the Rockford Icehogs. He posted a stat line of 7 goals and 12 assists for 19 points in 36 games with the piggies. He also was a +5 in terms of +/- ratio.
Philipp also has shined brightly on the national stage, as he has been terrific during his two World Junior appearances. During the WJC, he has a combined 12 games played and has contributed 7 goals and 3 assists for team Switzerland. His +/- continued to be outstanding, as he was a +8 during his two WJC appearances.
Not only will Kurashev get to play only 2 and a half hours from his hometown, but HC Lugano has had some talent that they have produced over the years as well. Alex Tanguay, Patrice Bergeron, and former Blackhawk netminder Cristobal Huet all have spent time with the Swiss club. Current Columbus Blue Jackets rookie phenom Elvis Merzlikins also has suited up for the black and white during his path to the NHL.
Michal Teply is set to join BK Mladá Boleslav of the Czech Republic. BK Mladá Boleslav plays in the Czech Extraliga, which is the top league in the country. Teply was another 4th round selection for the Blackhawks, this time in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft (#105 overall). He has very good agility, and his skating edges are above average. He has a towering 6’3″ frame, so he is able to contribute a lot on the defensive side of the puck as well. While he does lack some physicality for his size, this can always be improved, just as Kirby Dach is finding out.
Teply is another forward that is relatively new to the Blackhawks organization. He spent this past season playing for the Winnipeg Ice of the Western Hockey League (WHL). He had a very impressive debut in juniors, as he posted a line of 29 goals and 34 assists (63 points) in only 53 games played. Michal only has one World Juniors appearance under his belt, and he produced fairly well for the Czech Republic generating 5 assists in 5 games played internationally.
Similarly to Soderlund and Kurashev, Teply has also been loaned to play in his native country. He was born in Havlickuv Brod, Czech Republic, which is only an hour and a half drive from the stadium where BK Mladá Boleslav plays their home games.
Stay tuned for more updates as the Blackhawks more than likely will announce more player loans, transactions, and offseason news in the upcoming weeks during these crazy times in the world.