Adam Boqvist was selected 8th overall in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft. He spent his junior years overseas, and he always managed to be a consistent point producer. Following his selection in the draft, he took his talents to the OHL and joined the London Knights. During the 2018-19 season, Boqvist showed that he was not only living up to expectations, but he was also exceeding them. After scoring 60 points in 54 games, he joined the Blackhawks for the 2019-20 season.
When the Blackhawks entered their rebuild, Boqvist was one of the only pieces that seemed like a guarantee to stick around. There were a lot of aging players on less-than-ideal contracts that were weighing down the team’s salary. Finally, management seemed to have gotten the hint that the glory days were behind them, and they officially announced a plan to rebuild. When this announcement was made, it looked like things were finally starting to look up for the Blackhawks. There was only one issue. A shiny new toy began to tempt Bowman, and he could not resist.
On July 23rd, 2021, the Blackhawks pulled the trigger on one of the most controversial trades made in the team’s history. Adam Boqvist was packaged with the 12th overall pick in 2021, the 44th overall pick in 2021, and a 2022 first-round pick. This massive group of assets was sent to the Columbus Blue Jackets for the 32nd overall pick in 2021, a 2022 sixth-round pick, and Seth Jones. Immediately following the trade, the Blackhawks extended Jones to an 8 year, $9.5 million annual average value contract that kicks in next year.
The wounds of the Boqvist trade are recent. A lot of assets were packaged in return for Jones, and most of them are still question marks. The Blackhawks 2021 first-round pick became Cole Sillinger, and there is still another first-round pick in the Blue Jackets’ possession that could become anything. Jones is eating away at the Blackhawks’ salary until 2030, which seems to go against everything the rebuild had implied. Boqvist himself is 21, which is nowhere near his peak performance age. This trade is already aging poorly, and there is still potential for it to get much worse.
Boqvist’s best year was the 2020-21 season, where he scored 16 points in 35 games with the Blackhawks.