The NHL Draft is just two days away and it’s a nervous time for Chicago Blackhawks fans.
Well, general manager Stan Bowman has done nothing to help out Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews over the last few years. The result has been a first-round sweep and not even making the playoffs over the last two seasons.
That CAN’T happen with Hall of Fame players like Kane and Toews. They showed us last season that they have at least one more deep playoff run in them. Now they need Bowman’s help, which makes me want to throw up just writing it.
For a while, it seemed like the obvious choice for the Hawks at No. 3 was defenseman Bowen Byram. The kid is a future No. 1 defensemen in the NHL. Yes, the Hawks already have Adam Boqvist, Nicolas Beaudin, Ian Mitchell, and Henri Jokiharju, who should all become NHL-caliber players at some point, but Byram’s skill-set is so good that his upside is greater than all four of those players.
He has even been compared to Duncan Keith. Byram will see time in the NHL next season, and he’s good enough to make an impact right away. Lock at No. 3 right? Well, not so fast.
There have been “rumors” that Hawks want to take a center in the draft.
A source just told me the Hawks are leaning heavily towards drafting a center, and it's not necessarily Turcotte. Zegras, Dach and Cozens all possibilites as well. Ah, the Bowman curveball. Wouldn't be an NHL draft without one.
— Jay Zawaski (@JayZawaski670) June 17, 2019
I HATE YOU STAN.
My hope here is that Bowman is trying to create some kind of smoke screen, but why would he? He has the third overall pick, and we know what players are going one and two. What’s the point?
That means there could very well be truth to this rumor.
If the Blackhawks want to go with a center, then it comes down to three players (well, three players I would take anyway:
Alex Turcotte, Trevor Zegras, or Dylan Cozens.
With Byram on the board though, it doesn’t make sense for the Hawks to take a center with the No. 3 pick. That’s why if they really are going to take a center, they should trade back with the Wings or Kings, who would take Byram in a heartbeat.
That way they can pick up an asset or two, and get the center they want.
Chief of Barstool Sports had some great analysis on this with Craig Button. Check it out below.
Arguably the biggest ep we’ve had this summer
🔘Craig Button talking NHL Draft
🔘WSD can’t get up for the Sox
🔘Bulls draft talk https://t.co/yAsaWqwDSI
— Chief (@BarstoolChief) June 18, 2019
Again, if the Blackhawks want to take a center, it would be very, very Stan Bowman of them not to trade back. Almost every team behind the Hawks would take Byram in that spot. It’s a no-brainer.
I’m far from an NHL expert, but if you follow my Bears’ work you know I’m a big “eye-test” guy. After watching some YoutTube videos and game film, I will give my brief scouting reports on Byram, Turcotte, Zegras, and Cozens. I’ll throw in some videos as well.
-great with puck
-able to play big minutes
-future No.1 defensemen
NHL Comp: Duncan Keith
-has makings of No. 1 center
-Con: offensive upside
-NHL Comp: Jonathan Toews
-NHL Comp: Evgeny Kuznetsov
-size + Build
-NHL Comp: higher skilled Ryan Kesler
Nick is the editor-in-chief at TheLoopSports.com & owner of TheChalkTLS.com. He is also a fantasy sports junkie, sports bettor, and Bears/Football fanatic. For more fun, follow him on Twitter @PetroTLS.