The Chicago Blackhawks have one forward they are going to have to consider moving in the coming weeks. Kirby Dach has been struggling this season and moving him down to the Rockford IceHogs for a little confidence boost might not be the worst move in the world.
The Chicago Blackhawks have the center depth. Jonathan Toews, Henrik Borgstrom, Dylan Strome, and Ryan Carpenter can hold their own down the middle while the team gives Kirby Dach a chance to hit his stride in the AHL for a few weeks.
Dach came into the 2019-20 season as the third overall pick in the 2019 draft, and he left that year as the one player looking like a steal from the draft and looking so far ahead of his competition, but the rest has caught up to him.
Jack Hughes has been great, Trevor Zegras has been in the news recently, and guys like Moritz Seider and Bowen Byram look like future leaders of their team. Dach on the other hand is looking like a future Dylan Strome, someone who just cannot get it done in the NHL.
Dach has had a different path than a lot of the competition from his draft class. He missed most of last season with a wrist injury and did not get a lot of time to develop in the AHL, rather he was just pushed right into the big leagues. That has been a major complaint about the Blackhawks thus far. They are not good at developing players in house, rather they have been pushing their young players into the league before they were ready to go.
For the team to succeed for years to come they need to give Kirby Dach a chance to hit his stride by letting him take a step back with the IceHogs. He has been someone the team has relied upon a lot this season and he has done a lot of good, but his lack of face off wins and the fact that he isn't shooting the puck enough still needs to be corrected.
Rather than playing him with Kane and DeBrincat right away, I wouldn't mind seeing him get a few weeks with the IceHogs to see what he can do down there and then get the jump back to the NHL to help them going into the second half of the season from January on.
The Hawks have a lot of tough decisions ahead with a lot of key players being on expiring deals. The decisions are not going to be meaningless and the team needs to have a full time general manager and a president of hockey operations in place to help guide the future of the franchise. Hopefully the team can make an announcement on that front soon.