Photo: Colorado Avalanche 2015 first round pick Mikko Rantanen signed an entry-level deal with the team in July (courtesy of Andy Cross/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
Entering the 2015 NHL Draft, there was much uncertainty regarding the prospects coming out of Finland. TPS Turku center Mikko Rantanen was the top-ranked European skater according to Central Scouting, but after that it was anybody’s guess as to how things would go in Sunrise, Florida. Read more»
Photo: Chicago Blackhawks prospect Graham Knott, the team’s first selection of the 2015 NHL Draft, brings defensive ability in a power winger’s frame (courtesy of Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)
As General Manager Stan Bowman, Senior Director of Amateur Scouting Mark Kelley and the rest of the Chicago Blackhawks brass headed to the 2015 NHL Draft in Sunrise, Florida, it was no secret that Blackhawks upper management were about to have not only a busy draft, but a busy summer as well. Read more»
Photo: Chicago Blackhawks prospect Stephen Johns, selected 60th overall at the 2010 NHL draft, led Rockford in playoff scoring to cap off a career-best scoring season in 2014-15 (courtesy of Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire)
The Chicago Blackhawks went into the 2010 NHL Entry Draft plagued by uncertainty. Sure, the team was fresh off winning their first Stanley Cup in 49 years, but the celebration could only last so long. The fact of the matter was the Blackhawks were pressed against the salary cap, so the offseason would see general manager Stan Bowman make a flurry of trades and signings to ensure the Blackhawks were both cap-compliant and a Cup contender. It probably sounds familiar.
Photo: Chicago Blackhawks prospect Nick Schmaltz, drafted 20th overall at the 2014 NHL Draft, was the top-scoring freshman for North Dakota, with 26 points in 38 games (courtesy of Michael Tureski/Icon Sportswire)
After the Blackhawks defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 6 on June 15th, the great debate began again as to whether or not Chicago is considered a modern-day dynasty in the NHL. Winning three Stanley Cups in just six seasons, especially in the salary-cap era, is no easy feat, but the Blackhawks have continued to be the cream of the crop come the postseason. While free agent signings and trades always help add depth to a team like the Blackhawks, it’s to smart drafting that Chicago can credit a fair amount of its success.
Photo: 2015 NHL Draft prospects (front l-r) Mitch Marner and Lawson Crouse, and (back I-r) Noah Hanifin, Jack Eichel, Connor McDavid, and Dylan Strome are players expected to be chosen at the top of the draft being held in Sunrise, FL on 6/26 & 27 (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Just like that, another year is over. The Chicago Blackhawks have won their third Stanley Cup in six years, elevating the team’s exciting roster to dynasty status. For the rest of the league, the 2015 NHL Draft now looms large on the calendar, taking place June 26th and 27th at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida. Read more»