Photo: Stephen Johns is one of Chicago’s many hulking defensemen who likely have a future in the NHL (courtesy of Mark Spowart/Icon Sportswire)
For years, one of the key concerns plaguing the Chicago Blackhawks was the lack of a quality second-line center. While general manager Stan Bowman is hoping his big free agent acquisition, Brad Richards, is a temporary solution for the 2014-15 season, the answer for future seasons may come from within the organization. Bowman and Co. have taken it upon themselves over the past few years to draft a plethora of centers.
Teuvo Teravainen is ready to make the jump from Finland to North America, but whether he winds up in the AHL or NHL is yet to be determined. (courtesy of Steve Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images)
This edition of the Chicago Blackhawks Top 20 ranking includes a handful of new names, led by 2014 first-round pick Nick Schmaltz debuting in the second spot behind incumbent top prospect Teuvo Teravainen.
Photo: Chris Calnan, a third round selection in 2012, capped off a strong freshman season for Boston College, which will face Union when the 2014 Men’s Frozen Four kicks off on Thursday (courtesy of Fred Kfoury/Icon SMI)
The Chicago Blackhawks system includes a deep pool of NCAA prospects as well as a few recent picks from overseas. Five of Chicago’s collegiate prospects will take part in the upcoming 2014 Men’s Frozen Four in Philadelphia.
Photo: Brandon Pirri earned an opportunity on Chicago’s second line and has responded with three goals, one assist in his last five games (courtesy of Robin Alam/Icon SMI)
The Chicago Blackhawks’ organizational depth has begun to break through to the NHL level in 2013-14. Led by Brandon Pirri, a handful of prospects have seen playing time in Chicago so far this season, while the depth on the wing and the blue line allowed General Manager Stan Bowman to swing a trade for former-Blackhawk Kris Versteeg.
Photo: With an NHL spot secured, Brandon Saad can set his sights on making a good impression on Team USA brass when the 2013-14 season opens (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The Chicago Blackhawks maintain a prospect pool that features both quantity and quality, from potential top-six forwards to versatile blueliners that could contribute down the road. There have not been many changes at the top, but the 2013 draft class increased the competition for lower spots and put three new prospects inside the Top 20.