Editorials

One first-round pick won’t be enough for the Chicago Blackhawks

By Jimmy Lynch
Ian Mitchell #51, Chicago Blackhawks Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports
Ian Mitchell #51, Chicago Blackhawks Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports /
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This season has been anything but great for the Chicago Blackhawks. During an apparent rebuild and reconstruction of the team, one thing is for sure; one first-round draft pick will not be enough. The Blackhawks have one first-round draft pick as of now for the 2021 NHL draft. Hopefully, by the end of the season, the team will have added one or two more.

I am no NHL general manager, but to me the best way to rebuild a franchise is through the NHL draft. While no draft pick is ever a guarantee in the NHL, for the Chicago Blackhawks, having more first-round picks around won’t be a downgrade by any means.

This past year the Blackhawks drafted Lucas Reichel with the 17th overall pick at the draft. That was their only pick in the first round, so they had to wait till round two to make another selection. Reichel very well could be an NHL player someday, but during a rebuild, the Blackhawks need to add as many prospects as possible in the hopes that some of them can make an impact on the NHL roster.

The Blackhawks have some pieces they could offer up in a trade that could add a first-round draft pick or high-end prospect. Trading away players like Connor Murphy, Calvin de Haan, Carl Soderberg, or Mattias Janmark would definitely be able to warrant a first-round draft pick if the deal is worked the right way.

The NHL Draft is the best way for the Chicago Blackhawks to rebuild this team.

Moving on from fan favorites and good players in a deal that brings in a draft pick is never favorable from a fan’s perspective, but things are different now in Chicago. The Blackhawks said they were rebuilding and then added several veterans to fill out their lineup.

They said they would be bad, but it was alright because the team had a bigger plan in play. Now it is time for Chicago to finally show that plan in action this season by being willing to deal some players by the trade deadline.

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It is not like Chicago is sacrificing anything by trading away one of the players mentioned above. This might be the worst roster on the ice this season and is definitely the worst Blackhawks team we have seen in the past five or so seasons.

As long as the Blackhawks add some draft picks and prospects, then the record will not matter too much at the end of the season. Many high-end prospects will be available for Chicago if they do end up losing a lot of games this season, and all that means is the team will be adding another player on par with Kirby Dach.

Last season saw Chicago trade Robin Lehner to the Vegas Golden Knights for a second round draft pick… a player like that is definitely worth a first-round pick, in my opinion. So this coming season, Stan Bowman should try and get more from his trades; otherwise, let someone else be the GM for this team.

There have been some reasons for optimism after the first three games of the season, but if Chicago does not add any prospects or future draft picks during the year, then I am afraid this season would be even worse than already imagined. I know it is early to call for a trade, but it is just something to keep an eye on.

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