Here Is What You Would Do With Lukas Reichel vs. What the Chicago Blackhawks Are Doing

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports
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Lukas Reichel's first full NHL season is not going well.

Once the Chicago Blackhawks' top prospect, he is playing like he was forgotten about the moment Connor Bedard was drafted by the franchise.

It is hard to watch considering Reichel was supposed to be an offensive force along with Bedard.

Instead, Lukas has nine points on the season with just three goals. He has just one point this month and his last goal came against the Colorado Avalanche in December. That performance against Colorado provided hope he would break out of his slump. Instead, he just got worse.

His advanced numbers are brutal. Reichel's confidence looks like it has been shot to the point where he has not shot the puck in his past three games.

So how should the Chicago Blackhawks solve this problem with Reichel?

Nick Foligno is set to return from injured reserve, so someone is about to lose some playing time. That is why addressing Reichel's struggles with some sort of roster move is coming to a head. Head coach Luke Richardson and general manager Kyle Davidson have the following options...

1) Let him work through his struggles.

It is what they are doing with struggling goalie Arvid Soderblom. The Hawks are not competing for a playoff spot. Injuries have decimated the roster to the point where the Blackhawks are once again in the running to land the best odds in the NHL Draft Lottery. The prize is the chance to draft another generational talent in Macklin Celebrini.

Reichel continuing to play has not helped the Hawks win much, but it sure has helped another inadvertent tank. Plus, not being competitive in the standings should allow him some patience as it is not like he is blocking another stud prospect. Yes, Colton Dach is an exciting prospect, but he is being given his full time to develop in Rockford much like Reichel was granted.

2) Bench him.

Maybe a few nights as a healthy scratch are what Reichel needs to clear his mind. Richardson did make him a healthy scratch earlier in the season. Lukas admitted it was a wake-up call.

Soderblom has been given some grace to work on his game in the NHL. He also has been limited in how much he has played. When Arvid has played, he has shown improvement. That could work for Reichel too.

3) Send him down to the IceHogs.

A trip to the AHL might be needed. He does have 41 career goals in Rockford. After the initial shock of being demoted wears off, Reichel's confidence can be rebuilt once he starts to see some pucks get through the net in the minors.

This is a 21-year-old former wunderkind, so he is still too young to give up on and just trade away. Something needs to be done to salvage his career.