Photo: Chicago’s first pick of the 2015 Draft, Graham Knott, is off to a slow start in 2015-16 but has the skill level to produce much more (courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)
The months leading up to the 2015-16 season saw the Chicago Blackhawks shuffle several players. In terms of prospects, the Blackhawks sent out Stephen Johns, Michael Paliotta, Alex Broadhurst, and Joakim Nordstrom in a variety of trades. Futhermore, Matt Carey, Drew LeBlanc, and Mac Carruth were not extended qualifying offers with the team, though Carruth signed an AHL deal with the Blackhawks’ minor league affiliate, the Rockford IceHogs. Defenseman Sam Jardine signed a contract with the IceHogs as well, hoping he can use this opportunity to earn an NHL-contract with Chicago in the foreseeable future.
Photo: Chicago Blackhawks rookie defenseman Viktor Svedberg (R) is congratulated by his teammates after netting his first NHL goal (courtesy of Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Images)
While it was not a memorable game for the Chicago Blackhawks, the loss may still hold some significance for defenseman Viktor Svedberg as the big Swede notched his first NHL goal in the Blackhawks 4-1 loss to the Washington Capitals. Read more»
Photo: Peterborough Petes defenseman and Tampa Bay Lightning prospect Dominik Masin, and Kingston Frontenacs forward and Florida Panthers prospect Juho Lammikko may one day be NHL divisional rivals, but they will go head-to-head in an interesting OHL clash this weekend (courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images and Aaron Bell/OHL Images)
Auston Matthews is taking an unconventional path to the NHL, and has earned a few accolades already while playing in Switzerland. Two electric playmakers go head-to-head in a battle of assist machines in the QMJHL, and a pair of potential Canadian teammates will likely see a lot of each other in a weekend contest. The Tampa Bay Lightning’s newest signee lines up against a powerhouse forward in what could be a preview of what to expect in the future from both Floridian franchises. NCAA hockey is back, and two Top-20 teams are set to clash in a non-conference game to close out this week’s edition of Prospect Faceoff. Read more»
Photo: Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk (#57) celebrates his first NHL goal with teammates Artem Anisimov (#15) and Artemi Panarin (#72) in the Blackhawks 4-1 win over the New York Islanders (courtesy of Warren Wimmer/Icon Sportswire)
He watched teammate Artemi Panarin net his first NHL goal in the Chicago Blackhawks‘ 2015-16 home opener on Wednesday, so Chicago rookie defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk decided to get into the act himself as he potted his first NHL marker in his team’s 4-1 win Saturday over the New York Islanders at the United Center. Read more»
Photo: Lake Erie Monsters forward and Columbus Blue Jackets prospect Markus Hannikainen will start the 2015-16 season with the Blue Jackets’ new AHL affiliate in Cleveland, Ohio (courtesy of Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire)
The Central Division isn’t home to as many radical changes as the Pacific Division, but it is part of the American Hockey League’s new landscape.
The Manitoba Moose have returned, while the Lake Erie Monsters have a new affiliate — switching from Colorado to the Columbus Blue Jackets — and the rest of the division is ripe with talent. Read more»