3 first-round talents the Blackhawks can steal in Round 2 of the NHL Draft

With two picks in the second round heading into the NHL Draft, the Chicago Blackhawks can land first-round-caliber talent in more than just Round 1.
U18 Five Nations Tournament
U18 Five Nations Tournament / Michael Miller/ISI Photos/GettyImages
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Adam Jecho, C/Edmonton Oil Kings

At 6’5, 201 pounds, power forward potential is in store for Adam Jecho, and it’s one of three traits Elite Prospects listed as his player type. Like Harrison Brunicke, there is a chance this first-round-caliber talent could also freefall into the third round, but FC Hockey’s rankings have him clocked in at No. 39, and THN/Kennedy has him ranked 36th, so I wouldn’t rule out him going late in the first round if someone wanted to “reach” for the rangy center. 

Having played overseas until this season, Jecho dominated with Tappara in 2022-23 in U18 SM-sarja, with 47 points and 21 goals in 37 regular season contests, and he parlayed that into a successful rookie year in North America for the Edmonton Oil Kings. 

This past season, Jecho had a respectable 47 points and 23 goals in 54 contests, and it’s a solid foundation for what should be an even more improved 2024-25 season should he stick around in the WHL instead of returning to Europe. 

Jesse Courville-Lynch of The Hockey News hints that Jecho’s forte isn’t in the top-six. But having seen his ability to produce well during his first year in the WHL, I can see him stepping onto NHL ice in a few seasons after his time in juniors is up, and following some pro hockey experience in the AHL as a depth scorer, top-six or not.

For a team like the Blackhawks that is already building a young top-six around Connor Bedard and Philipp Kurashev, someone like Adam Jecho would nevertheless be more than valuable on the checking line. His presence would keep players like Bedard and Kurashev from doing all the heavy lifting in the offensive zone, and a few more players like Jecho would make the Blackhawks a well-rounded young hockey team. 

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(Statistics powered by Elite Prospects)