3 Blackhawks to keep an eye on at the Prospect ShowcaseVincent Pariseon September 15, 2022 at 11:00 am

It is that time of year again. The Chicago Blackhawks and the rest of the National Hockey League are starting to get going again. As of right now, the rookies are beginning to show up to their cities to get ready for a big year.

Some of them will be in the NHL, some in the AHL, and some of them will head back to various junior teams around the world. For the Blackhawks, there are a lot of new young players to be excited about.

A year ago, the Hawks were trying (failing) to put together a team that was going to win. They got off to a horrendous start which caused them to have an abysmal year. Now, the Hawks are clearly focused on building for the future.

On Wednesday, the Chicago Blackhawks announced their roster for the 2022 Tom Kurvers Prospect Challenge. This is a group of 13 forwards, eight defensemen, and two goalies that will show off prospects at Fifth Third Arena.

There are practices and two games against the Minnesota Wild as a part of this event. It is a great way for people to see what is going on with some of these young kids.

This group is made up of a bunch of kids that are former Blackhahwks’ draft picks. These are the three players on the roster to keep an extra close eye on:

1. Lukas Riechel

Lukas Reichel is the top prospect in the organization right now. He was Chicago’s first-round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft and has proven to be a very exciting player. With the Rockford Ice Hogs in 2021-22, he put on a show.

Reichel made his NHL debut in 2021-22 as well and didn’t look out of place at all. He has a long way to go before the is a full-time difference maker but there is no doubt that he is going to be a very good player. All eyes will be on him in this showcase.

2. Alex Vlasic

Alex Vlasic was a stud defenseman for Boston University during his time there. That led to him being a second-round pick by the Chicago Blackhawks in the 2019 NHL Draft.

He was also a part of that amazing 2018-19 United States Development Program team that saw so many players drafted in the first two rounds.

Once Vlasic finished with Boston University at the end of the 2022 season, he signed with the Hawks and played 15 games with them.

Vlasic isn’t a star-scoring defenseman but he is really solid with his skating which allows him to shut down opponents.

He does have the ability to create some offense when needed but he only had one goal and one assist for two points in those 15 games. He can get some muscle behind his slapshot which will help his offensive game but that isn’t the key to his game.

Vlasic is worth keeping an eye on because of his ability to shut people down. Because of these abilities, the Hawks might see him as a part of their future defense core. This showcase, training camp, and the preseason could land him a job with the big club this year.

3. Kevin Korchinski

Kevin Korchinski is one of four players from the 2022 NHL Draft that are going to be participating in this thing. It will be a great way for this highly touted Blackhawks draft pick to show just how good the is compared to his similarly aged peers.

If Korchinski can play really well over the next few weeks (even beyond this showcase), it will make Kyle Davidson look really smart for wanting this guy so badly. Hopefully, he is able to show his stuff well in this showcase. This will be the first time we get to get a really good look at him.

Hockey with a side of future ? pic.twitter.com/HQcVVV9wOX

— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) September 13, 2022

The Chicago Blackhawks need the future to be bright for a lot of these kids.

Obviously, the Chicago Blackhawks are nowhere near done with their rebuild just because they have some nice prospects there.

The 2023 NHL Draft could land them a really good player at the top of the board if they play their cards right and they get a little lucky. For now, it is about the kids they do have in the mix and seeing what can be next for them and this organization.

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