2. Dylan Guenther, RW, Edmonton Oil Kings
The second Edmonton Oil King to grace this list, Dylan Guenther, like Johnson, is an elite offensive talent that will be able to make a significant impact no matter what NHL team he joins. He is a natural leader as well, having been an alternate captain for the Oil Kings this year.
Guenther is a slim right-handed shot with remarkable prowess with the puck. He absolutely killed it for Edmonton in the shortened 2021 season, putting up 12 goals and 24 points in only 24 games played. Point-per-game players are typically star talents in the NHL, so if Guenther is able to translate his success in juniors to the big leagues, he’ll be in for a great career.
Despite having mid-range size to him, Guenther is also a speedy skater, and is able to play the puck deep into the offensive zone and generate a ton of scoring chances for both himself and his teammates. He is also one of the better natural wingers available in this year’s draft.
The kid is likely a lock to go in the top-five, so the Blackhawks will have to get extremely lucky to be able to get him. That being said, if the team has him in their sights, there is no way that they can pass him up.
1. Owen Power, D, University of Michigan
I am well aware that unless the Blackhawks have the number one draft selection, they are not going to get Owen Power. While there wasn’t really a lock for the top spot this year like Alexis Lafrenière or Connor McDavid, Power has been the consensus number one for a while.
However, the draft order is selected by lottery, so the Blackhawks (theoretically) have a chance to get the first overall pick. While this isn’t going to happen, Power is still worth taking a look at, because he is a fantastic defenseman and someone that is going to be a great NHLer.
Power began his junior career with the Chicago Steel and played this past year for the University of Michigan, where he was one of the best defenseman in the NCAA. At 6’5 and 214 pounds, he is an imposing threat on every shift and is able to clear guys out of the crease with ease. He can also contribute offensively, putting up 16 points in 26 games this season for the Wolverines.
It’s hard to say right now where Owen Power will end up, but unless the ‘Hawks get extraordinarily lucky, it won’t be in Chicago. Despite this, there is no reason for the team to not at least consider how they would develop him, because he will be a career defenseman. It would sure be nice to see him in a Blackhawks sweater.
The first round of the 2021 NHL Entry Draft will be held on July 23, with rounds two through seven being held the next day.