Connor Bedard: Future Blackhawk or Future Rival?
106 days until the 2023 Draft in Nashville. That's a long time. Obviously though Connor Bedard will know whom he'll be playing for well before then (NHL Draft Lottery day). If the Blackhawks do indeed get lucky (odds not in our favor, or any teams for that matter) and the "custom" jersey sales are sold out even before a Bedard #98 Hawks jersey is for sale, keep this in mind: The most likely scenario is that Chicago will not like Connor Bedard.
There are 10 other teams currently that will have odds for the right to select the Regina center. Columbus, San Jose, Anaheim, Montreal, Arizona, Philadelphia, Vancouver, St. Louis, Detroit, and Ottawa will have a say on that history evening.
Out of those 10 you could go through the Blackhawks history and claim some rivalry from a little to a lot with those teams. Obviously St. Louis, yes Detroit (though less so these days), and Vancouver during the dynasty runs. We even have a little history with the Flyers as Kane potted the cup winning goal in Philadelphia just 13 years ago.
How about how Columbus swindled us in the Seth Jones deal and then get Bedard to boot? Well, that doesn't seem fair now does it. Montreal would have Dach and Bedard making highlights during our rebuild would sting as would DeBrincat being fed one-timers from #98...
How about seeing Sportscenter highlights of Zegras, Bedard, and McTavish most evenings... That wouldn't be the best thinking about what might have been. No, none of these other scenarios make us feel good about Connor Bedard UNLESS we get him. So be prepared Chicago, to not like Connor Bedard. To call him our rival, not our savior.