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.
Photo: University of Minnesota forward Seth Ambroz celebrates teammate Justin Holl’s last second, game-winning goal as stunned University of North Dakota goaltender Zane Gothberg looks on in Minnesota’s 2-1 semi-final win over North Dakota at the 2014 Frozen Four (courtesy of Elsa/Getty Images)
Union College junior Daniel Ciampini and University of Minnesota senior defenseman Justin Holl (CHI) made this year’s NCAA Frozen Four semi-final games ones to remember.
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: Winger Jimmy Hayes has been a buzzy name in training camp and is one of several prospects knocking on the door of full-time NHL duty going into 2013-14 (courtesy of Warren Wimmer/Icon SMI)
The Chicago Blackhawks have plenty of prospects to watch during the 2013-14 season, particularly at the pro level where a few spots are open in Chicago and a talented class of rookies will be debuting with the AHL's Rockford IceHogs.