Team Depth Chart of NHL Prospects
  • Depth and talent of center prospects
  • Defensive prospects mix size with mobility
  • Overall depth of system is strong
  • Little depth on wings, particularly right side
  • Lack of an elite goaltending prospect

About Prospect Scores and Probability

Prospect Criteria

Legend of Players' Leagues
Playing in N.A. Pro (NHL, AHL, ECHL, etc.)
Playing in CHL (OHL, QMJHL, WHL)
Playing in NCAA
Playing in Europe
Playing in Junior 'A' (USHL, BCHL, AJHL, etc.)
Not Categorized Yet


League Prosp. talent Prob. of success
1. Antti Raanta Pro 7.0 C
2. Mac Carruth Pro 6.5 C
3. Matt Tomkins NCAA 6.5 D
4. Ivan Nalimov Europe 6.5 D

Right Wing

League Prosp. talent Prob. of success
1. Mark McNeill Pro 7.0 C
2. Ryan Hartman Pro 7.0 C
3. Chris Calnan NCAA 6.5 C
4. Matt Iacopelli Junior 6.5 C
5. Jack Ramsey Junior 6.0 D
6. Kyle Baun Pro 6.0 D

Left Wing

League Prosp. talent Prob. of success
1. Garret Ross Pro 6.5 C
2. Tyler Motte NCAA 6.5 C
3. Anthony Louis NCAA 6.5 C
4. Fredrik Olofsson Junior 6.5 C
5. Matt Carey Pro 6.5 D
6. Spencer Abbott Pro 6.0 C


League Prosp. talent Prob. of success
1. Teuvo Teravainen Pro 8.0 B
2. Nick Schmaltz NCAA 7.5 C
3. Phillip Danault Pro 7.0 C
4. John Hayden NCAA 7.0 D
5. Joakim Nordstrom Pro 6.5 B
6. Alex Broadhurst Pro 6.5 C
7. Vince Hinostroza Pro 6.5 C
8. Drew LeBlanc Pro 6.5 D
9. Beau Starrett Junior 6.5 D
10. Dylan Sikura NCAA 6.5 D
11. Tanner Kero Pro 6.5 D
12. Luke Johnson NCAA 6.0 C


League Prosp. talent Prob. of success
1. Ville Pokka Pro 7.5 C
2. Stephen Johns Pro 7.0 C
3. Michael Paliotta NCAA 7.0 C
4. Trevor van Riemsdyk Pro 6.5 B
5. Dillon Fournier Pro 6.5 C
6. Carl Dahlstrom Europe 6.5 C
7. Luc Snuggerud NCAA 6.5 C
8. Gustav Forsling Europe 6.5 C
9. Sam Jardine NCAA 6.5 D
10. Nick Mattson NCAA 6.5 D
11. Viktor Svedberg Pro 6.0 C
12. Mathieu Brisebois Pro 6.0 C
13. Robin Norell Europe 6.0 C
14. Andreas Soderberg Europe 6.0 C
15. Robin Press Europe 6.0 D

Many Blackhawk prospect camp graduates may skip juniors

by Bill Placzek

As Blackhawks prospect camp continues, the players seem a little more relaxed and focused, and in being so, look like better players in all cases.

Michal Barinka has caught up to the others, his stick work and shooting now equal to his fluid motion. His strong is very strong but so far errant, but in close he scores on the camp goaltenders like a forward.

There are considerations afoot to sign Vladimir Gusev, Alexander Barkunov, Olli Malmivaara, Michal Barinka and Lasse Kukkonen and assigned to Norfolk. Alexander Kozevnikov looks so good there are now discussions as to whether to sign him and send him to Norfolk as an 19-year-old with the option to call him up him to the parent club, instead of letting him sign and play junior Hockey in Val-D’Or as was Gusev.

Czech defender Petr Puncochar was a camp casualty, suffering a separated shoulder.

Jim Wisniewski continues to lead on the ice, explaining the drills to the others and passing the puck with authority. Teams seem to always find places for under 6 foot defenseman who pass like he does, but you have to wonder if he could handle the NHL forwards at his present size.

Speaking of size, or lack thereof, Duncan Keith continues to show how much he is a better skater than most in camp. He moves well enough to get to almost any on rusher, and engage. Can there be a place for another undersized Hawk defender, a la Pat Stapleton?

Blackhawk prospect camp starts with six omissions

by Bill Placzek

The Chicago Blackhawks boast the number one organizational rating from Hockey’s Future, so one would expect a full house of prospects ready and willing to show themselves off to the new proud parents.

Camp opened on the ice on Friday June 27th and ends with a mini tournament on July 5th.

Missing were Tomas Ruuttu, Pavel Vorobiev, Anton Babchuk, Alexander Barkunov, Oleg Minakov, and tardy was Brent Seabrook. Seabrook had a high school graduation to attend, his own. He arrived on Sunday. As far as the Russian prospects, the problems were one that their agents should have remediated. General Manager Mike Smith said, “We sent Vorobiev’s paperwork to his agent in November, Babchuk a little bit later but within enough time that they should be here. Can we blame them? No, they are 18-year-olds whose agents should be taking care of these things.”

The Blackhawks want to give Vorobiev a good opportunity to make the squad and the Hawks would like to get Babchuk over for good also. Barkunov was offered a contract last season and Mike Smith felt a good performance in this camp might have solidify his chances of making the club. Oleg Minakov, a good prospect in his own right, missed an opportunity to show off his wares.

Ruuttu, of course, is in the middle of a contract dispute about incentives.

Camp started with three days of conditioning and drills. The players gave a look at their skating speed, agility, maneuverability, and shooting skill.
Little Duncan Keith displayed world class skating ability but little else Read more»

Blackhawks: Predictions of 2003 Selections

by Bill Placzek

Although currently missing draft picks in the third and fourth rounds, the Chicago Blackhawks hold 10 (possibly 11) picks in the upcoming 2003 NHL entry draft.

Past history shows General Manager Mike Smith may use high picks #14, 52, and 59 to trade down and acquire picks in the missing rounds.

Every year I make my predictions on who the Blackhawks will pick, using their present draft slots as my guide. Here are the 2003 predictions.

In the first round, the Hawks are scheduled to select in slot #14. There have been sound bites to the press about getting a NHLer in a trade for this pick. But trading out of this slot would be a bad move, because a selection at #14 will provide a strong future prospect in this deep draft as long as the Hawks organization doesn’t lock on to a specific position.

Defense may be the target in the first round, because by the time the Hawks make their second pick, there is a real drop off in the pool.

Dion Phaneuf is the defenseman they may have in their targets. Although he doesn’t at this point in time project as a no. 1 defenseman, he possesses all the qualities the Blackhawk team needs. Former Hawk and present Red Deer Coach Brent Sutter will attest to his toughness, leadership, restraint, and good shot.

This selection would not be a cure-all. At this point Phaneuf may not even be the best defender in the WHL, but he is a solid prospect in an area the Blackhawks need improvement.

Someone may select Phaneuf before the Hawks, however, in which case G.M. Smith could pass on the available forwards and take, Read more»

Chicago Blackhawks 2002-03 Rookie Review

by Bill Placzek

The 2002-2003 NHL season saw eight new faces slip in and out of Chicago. Below is a review of how each rookie found ways to show off their wares to the parent club.

Tyler Arnason was called up during the 2001-02 season to see if his gift as an offensive play-maker could continue at the next level. At the end of that season he showed clearly had a quick burst up ice, a gift for seeing ways to exploit defenses, and a nose for the net. Although not a speed guy nor a ballerina on skates, Arnason showed he could pot goals but needed to work on his defensive game, not any different than many young players getting a chance in the NHL. His 2002 training camp continued to make the management see him as a guy they were unable to send down because he could get the goals the Blackhawks sorely needed.

The thinking at the end of the 2002 season was to try and play “Arny” with at least one vet who could help advise him on his area of deficiencies while they shared ice and similar game experiences. Injuries to Daze and other Hawks made scoring a priority, so Arnason was thrust into situations with players who were also not as concerned with the defensive side of the ice. Early on Arnason lead rookie scoring and the Hawk press staff started trying to market him as the next best hope. His production was very good scoring 19 goals and 20 assists but he continued to be unaware of defensive responsibilities and was part of the same break-downs as the season ended as when it started.

Based on Arnason’s potential the Blackhawks traded away another offensive only p Read more»

Two rookies remain on roster

by Bill Placzek

After very stirring performances by Hawk prospect Brent McLean, he was sent down to Norfolk with promising Mikhail Yakubov, Igor Radulov, Kent Huskins and Steve McCarthy, as each will be asked to get just a little bit better before they are given jobs.

Tyler Arnason, along with Shawn Thornton and journeymen Garry Valk will fill the spots vacated by the losses of Daze and Fleury. One of these two may be returned to Norfolk when the missing veterans return.
Arnason scored 3 goals and an assist in 21 games last year and had an impressive camp offensively, earning a spot based on his continuing improvement and ability to play the wing.
Son of a former early draft choice, Chuck Arnason, of the Flin Flon Bombers #7 overall to Montreal in 1971, Tyler worked hard to get in shape to compete for a chance to stay on the major league roster and had good preseason outings. His strength at this time are his offensive value.
Big Shawn Thornton was acquired for Marty Wilford, probably the best defenseman on many a Indianapolis Ice team. Toronto wanted the older veteran minor league defenseman and gave the bigger, low scoring Thornton in trade. Thornton is a few months older than Arnason, and his game is along the wall. He has showed he also has some play making ability, and although he may be just a temporary fill, good showings will only help his cause. When the injured Hawks return, he may be the first one sent down.

Why did the Hawks sent down McLean because of his value as a steady face-off man at all previous levels of development. Read more»

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