IIHF World Championships Day Two Blackhawks Recap: Reichel A Star In The Making?

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IIHF World Championships Day Two Blackhawks Recap: Reichel A Star In The Making?

Chicago Blackhawks

Night Two! (Real ones will get that that reference 👍🏻)

The IIHF World Championships continue for the second day in Latvia, with games starting while we are all sleeping and still making our first cups of coffee in the morning. If you slept in on this Saturday or, you know, were asleep at 4:15 a.m. like a normal person would be, you may have missed some impressive hockey from Blackhawks players and prospects. Most notably, 2020 first-round draft pick Lukas Reichel.

Germany def. Norway, 5-1

In a 5-1 win over Norway, the Germans notched their second win in as many games in the tournament, outscoring the Norwegians and the Italians by a combined 14-5 score. They’re really doing damage on me and my wife’s family heritage. But for Blackhawks fans, it’s awesome to see a prospect like Reichel have a coming out party like this so far in his first major international tournament action since being selected 17th overall by Chicago.

Reichel added this goal and an assist in the win over Norway, making it five points for him in the first two games of the tournament. He also went 4-for-6 at the face-off dot against Norway and was named the games best player on the German side.

The expectation from both the Blackhawks and from his agent, Allain Roy, for Reichel is to sign his entry-level contract with the organization following the conclusion of the World Championships and the more I watch him, the more I’m convinced that he has the makings of being a real impact player for the Blackhawks at the NHL level in the very near future.

Russia def. Great Britain, 7-1

Following Reichel and Germany’s drubbing of Norway, it was Nikita Zadorov and Max Shalunov’s turn to put on a show against an inferior opponent in Great Britain. No offense to our readers overseas, but you’re not a hockey nation, sorry. The Russians wasted no time and avoided the upset against Britain in a 7-1 win. This tournament has already seen the Latvians top Canada for the first time ever in a World Championship game and this morning, Denmark beat Sweden in another upset effort. So really there are no gimme games.

The lone Blackhawks-themed highlight coming from Zadorov on this stretch pass to Pavel Karnaukhov to set up the 5-1 goal in the second period. It’s the first and only point so far in two games for Zadorov and Shalunov combined.

Zadorov finished the game with the assist, two shots on goal, and a +4 rating. Shalunov has yet to get on the scoresheet in two games, but recorded five shots on goal, went 8-for-15 at then face-off dot, and was a +1 in the game.

Switzerland def. Czech Republic, 5-2

In the debut game for Blackhawks rookie Philipp Kurashev and the Swiss side, they took care of business against the Czechs and Dominik Kubalík with a 5-2 win. Kurashev tallied his first point of the tournament with a secondary assist on the 4-1 goal for Switzerland.

Kurashev finished the game with the assist, three shots on goal, and went 2-for-5 at the face-off dot. As for Kubalík and the Czechs, they drop their second game in as many days in regulation. He finished the game without a point, four shots on goal and was a -1 rating in the 5-2 loss.



Author: Mario Tirabassi

Mario Tirabassi is a writer for Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Mario_Tirabassi.