The Chicago Blackhawks have a lot going for them right now. They have two first round picks for the 2023 NHL Draft, one being the first overall pick. They have four second round picks to add quality prospects, andthey have a ton of draft capital for the next few years as well. With that said, there still is one problem that could impact the team down the line.
Drafting first overall can drastically change an NHL Franchise. The Blackhawks are set to draft Connor Bedard, a generational talent the league has not seen since the Edmonton Oilers drafted Connor McDavid in 2015. The Hawks were once in this position when they took Patrick Kane first overall in 2007, but there is a big difference between the 2007 Hawks and the 2023 Hawks.
One big problem for the Blackhawks at the 2023 NHL Draft.
When the Blackhawks drafted Patrick Kane in 2007, Jonathan Toews was already in the organization. Patrick Sharp had already been dealt to the Hawks and was in his mid twenties. Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook both were staples of the Blackhawks blue line already.
The Hawks farm system included guys like Dave Bolland, Dustin Byfuglien, Niklas Hjalmarsson, Corey Crawford, Troy Brower and Bryan Bickell just to name a few. Overall, the organization was in a position to add a generational star like Patrick Kane and surround him with good players.
In Kane’s first three seasons, the Blackhawks went from missing the playoffs in year one, to making it to the Conference Final in year two, to winning the Stanley Cup in year three. I don’t think the Hawks are in a position to do something like that with Connor Bedard.
Obviously the Blackhawks are lucky to have won the lottery and get a player like Bedard, but it needs to be pointed out that they are not really in a good spot to have him succeed off the bat, even with the addition of Taylor Hall.
Chicago does have some prospects to get excited about. Drew Commesso could be a great goaltender. Lukas Reichel looks like a player who can turn into a top six forward in the league. Kevin Korchinski could be a top offensive defenseman down the line, and Frank Nazar looks like a great second line center behind Bedard. Its just, at a time when adding Bedard, it just would have been nice if the list of young players like this went on a lot longer and included a lot of players ready to step into the league.