2010 NHL Entry Draft: Chicago Blackhawks draft preview

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Draft
Headquarters
for our complete coverage of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.

Stan Bowman get’s his shot at continuing to build the Blackhawks,
after winning the Stanley Cup thanks to superior drafting by former GM
Dale Tallon. The Hawks are in need of goaltending depth in the system
(of course) as well as up forward, as it’s likely we’ll see a number of
their AHL prospects take the step up to the NHL this fall. There’s no
surprise that the Hawks’ big strength is on defense, and despite the
scoring talent the Hawks touted this past summer the organization will
likely be thinking offense in the draft. After sending Dustin Byfuglien
and Ben Eager (along with Brent Sopel) to the Thrashers, the Hawks now
have some salary room and an even bigger need for more depth at the
forward position. With two picks in the first round now (24, 30) they’ll
have a good chance to build that depth back up.

2010 draft
picks:

Round 1 – 24th
Round 1 – 30th
Round 2 – 43rd
Round 2 – 54th
Round 3 – 60th
Round 3 – 90th
Round 4 – 120th
Round 6 – 151st
Round 6 – 180th
Round 7 – 191st
Round 7 – 210th

Top prospects (Per Hockey’s
Future
):

1. Dylan
Olsen
, D
2. Kyle Beach, LW
3. Nick Leddy, D
4. Akim Aliu, RW
5. Shawn Lalonde, D
6. Marcus Kruger, C
7. Jack Skille, RW
8. Billy Sweatt, LW
9. Brandon Pirri, C
10. Igor Makarov, RW

PHT’s
mock draft results:

24 – Quinton Howden – C – Moose Jaw (WHL)

A
skilled forward with a good combo of size, speed and scoring touch, yet
who plays as a much smaller forward. He’s not flashy but creates
turnovers on the forecheck and if he can play up to his size (6-3, 182)
could be special.

30 – Beau Bennett – RW – Penticton
(BCHL)

A talented winger, who is just coming out of
prep-school hockey, he’s been shooting up draft boards and could sneak
into the first round.

What the blogs are saying:

Second
City Hockey
, commenting on the blockbuster trade with Atlanta:

Everyone
knew that the Hawks needed to jettison some salary coming into
10-11, and Buff, Sharp, Versteeg, and Ladd were the prime candidates
among the already crowded corps of forwards. Buff made himself the most
expendable by underperforming during the past two regular seasons, and
that he was (occasionally) a force during the playoffs this year allowed
Bowman to sell high. Additionally, the Hawks have Kyle Beach ready to make a grab at a roster
spot, and he’s younger and cheaper, something the Hawks need to become.
In trading Sopel, the Hawks do lose a very valuable penalty killer, but
the fact of the matter is that his $2.2 cap hit is just too much for a
#5 defenseman even on a team without cap woes. Eager is a restricted
free agent, and Bryan Bickell seems primed to step into that
role at a discounted rate after performing admirably when he had the
opportunity this year.

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    After making NHL debut, Jones re-ups with Isles

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    One of the Isles’ feel-good stories from last season wrote a new chapter on Thursday.

    Connor Jones, the undrafted 26-year-old that made his NHL debut in April, has signed a one-year, two-way extension, the club announced.

    Jones certainly earned his way to the show. He spent four years at Quinnipiac before catching on with the Oilers, spending time with both their AHL and ECHL affiliates before jumping to the Isles organization in 2015.

    Though he’s not an offensive producer — just 19 points in 58 games with Bridgeport last season — Jones emerged as a good energy guy that proved an effective penalty killer.

    With AHL Bridgeport, he also played alongside his twin brother, Kellen, who was in attendance as Connor made his NHL debut in April.

    Connor would go on to play four games for the Isles, averaging just under 12 minutes per night.

    Report: Dwight King could be KHL-bound

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    Dwight King, the burly forward that won a pair of Stanley Cups in Los Angeles, may be on his way to Russia.

    Per News 1130 in Vancouver, King is set to sign in the KHL after failing to land a contract this summer. The 28-year-old finished last season in Montreal after spending the first seven years of his NHL career in Los Angeles.

    For a time, King was an effective skater for L.A. He posted a career-high 15 goals and 30 points during the ’13-14 campaign, and followed that up with a 13-goal, 26-point effort the year following. He also had a nice showing during the Kings’ 2014 Cup run, finishing with 11 points in 26 games.

    King’s biggest issue is his skating ability. At 6-foot-4, 229 pounds, he was never the fleetest of foot, but had been working on his speed this offseason.

    More, from Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman:

    King is still looking for work after finishing the season in Montreal. There are a few Western Conference teams poking around.

    “I’m just looking for an opportunity at this point. I’m going to be on the ice more this year, doing a little more skills and skating. Any bit of improvement I can find.”

    King is going to try a couple new teachers, then decide which route to take. One also works with former teammate (and new Golden Knight) Brayden McNabb. King is quite the physical specimen, but will take a new approach. He regularly played at 230–231 pounds, but is going to go to 225–226. And he believes the Western Conference is better for him.

    News 1130 reported that Vancouver had shown “mild interest” in King, who just wrapped a three-year $5.85 million deal with a $1.95M cap hit.

    King appeared in 17 games for the Habs after being picked up at the deadline last season, scoring once. He went pointless in six playoff games.

    McLellan excited about addition of ‘utility player’ Strome

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    To hear Todd McLellan explain it, Ryan Strome could be wearing many hats next season.

    That’s what the Oilers head coach said on Wednesday of the former Isles forward, acquired earlier this summer in the Jordan Eberle trade. McLellan expressed excitement over Strome’s ability to play both center and wing.

    “He (Strome) is a utility player,” McLellan said, per the Sun. “He has the ability to play center and has in the past. He’s been able to win faceoffs and he’s comfortable on the wing. We have the luxury of moving players around, and as the fans here know, we like to do that.”

    That last sentence is clearly a reference to Leon Draisaitl. Draisaitl has flipped back and forth between playing as Edmonton’s No. 2 center and as a winger on the top line alongside Connor McDavid. The talented German’s had success at both, which is why Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli is still unsure if Draisaitl is a center or a winger.

    More: Strome pumped at prospect of playing with Draisaitl, McDavid

    As for Strome, he certainly gives Edmonton some flexibility — on the ice, and on the books.

    With a $2.5 million cap hit (compared to Eberle’s $6M), he’s provided Chiarelli with more cap space to get the Draisaitl contract done. And there’s also the potential for him to be a real bargain. Remember, Strome is only two years removed from a sophomore campaign in which he scored 17 goals and 50 points in 81 contests. His subsequent two years with the Isles were a disappointment, but the talent is still there.

    The wildcard in all this is the fact that Strome’s heading into a contract year. He’ll be a restricted free agent next July, so the ’17-18 campaign will go a long way in determining his value… and, potentially, his future in Edmonton.

    McDavid disappointed at NHL decision to skip Olympics

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    TORONTO (AP) Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid said he’s disappointed the NHL won’t be sending players to the Winter Olympic in South Korea.

    “It would have been a special group, and you’re just hopeful to be a part of it,” McDavid told reporters at a charity event Wednesday. “It’s disappointing, but that’s the way it is. You want to be able to represent your country on the highest stage, and the Olympics is obviously the highest stage possible.”

    McDavid’s comments came a day after Hockey Canada announced it was looking for non-NHL talent for Canada’s roster in Pyeongchang.

    Sean Burke, the team’s GM, said Tuesday the bulk of Canada’s team will come from players based in Europe.

    The NHL’s reasons not to participate in the upcoming Games include disagreements over costs as well as problems accommodating the Games during its regular season.

    When asked whether there was the possibility of getting permission from the Oilers to attend the Olympics, McDavid was non-committal.

    “I’m not too involved in all that stuff,” he said.

    The NHL Players Association has said the league’s decision is “short-sighted.”

    The NHL allowed its players to compete in every Olympics since 1998 Nagano Games, and Canada was won three of the last four gold medals.