We are at the mid-way point of the season and the Chicago Blackhawks are a middle of the pack, fringe playoff team. Key component to their roster has always been building through the draft and allowing players to develop in the system. Therefore, we have decided to look at their farm team and highlight players with some pro roster potential.
Sam Bennett – Former 2nd overall selection in the 2014 draft hasn’t lived up to his expectations. It’s his contract year so I’m sure the Hawks are glad to lock him up cheap but many are saying that Sam reaching his potential is becoming wishful thinking.
Dylan Strome – The former 5th overall pick in 2015 is finally producing offensively after being traded to the Hawks and is playing big minutes with players like Patrick Kane and Alex Debrincat. If he keeps it up, he’ll be a lock to make the NEFHL Hawks next season.
JT Compher – Looks to be a breakout year for JT. Hawks management were concerned after he got injured early on but has managed to keep up his play. It’s a contract year for him in NEFHL and he’s looking to play big minutes next season and get paid.
Mark Jankowski – The highly controversial Mark Jankowski has truly become a reliable player for the Flames. Despite averaging only 12 minutes of ice time, the 24 year old centerman is tied for 1st in shorthanded goals and points.
John Quenneville – John is a PPG in the AHL but can’t seem to find his game at the NHL level, posting zero points in 13 games. The two-way centerman is 22 now and has the skillset to stick with the Devils but isn’t doing himself any favors with this season dry spell.
Andre Burakovsky – Disappointing season for the 5th year NHL player. Soon to be 24, Andre hasn’t been able to make his mark with the Capitals. He showed loads of potential early on but injuries have hindered his game. Contract year in NEFHL so we are expecting the Hawks to sign him cheap for the next 4 years.
Max Jones – The ruthless winger is showing he has what it takes to be a point producer in his first season in the AHL. The soon to be 21 year old certainly has the physical attributes of a NHLer but only time will tell if he can continue to hone his offense and remain injury-free.
Zach Sanford – 6 foot 4, Zach has the tools and frame to be a full time NHLer. At 24 years old, he’s still looking for a full time role with a rather stacked and young Blues team.
Austin Wagner – A nice surprise this season by being a regular on the Kings roster. Austin has shown the ability to make the most out of his ice time. With no PP time and averaging 8-9 minutes a night, he has managed a few goals and 7 points in 25 games.
Mathieu Joseph – In the similar mold to Austin Wagner, Mathieu Joseph has really impressed by making the Lightning out of camp. His 9 goals are good for 7th on the team while only averaging 12 minutes of ice time. The speedy, goal scoring winger has shown great willingness to do what it takes to score and make crucial plays down low.
Travis Dermott – The young defenseman has lots of upside and has been solid for the Leafs. With no PP time, he has still managed 10 points in 36 games while averaging 17 minutes of ice time.