The Prospect Pyramid Is Here, Apologies to Team USA, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

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The Prospect Pyramid Is Here, Apologies to Team USA, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

Chicago Blackhawks

This is the time of year where you start to get the gears moving again. You start to clear out the tumbleweeds and you start preparing for the next season and get a good look at your team, top to bottom. For the Blackhawks, there’s plenty of expectations for the 2021-22 season and a lot of the players that will help them reach those expectations, hopefully, are young players. Beyond the 2021-22 season in Chicago is a whole other story, but this year could give us a great measurement of what the future may hold for the Blackhawks.

•   With that in mind…I give you the groundwork for the 2021 Chicago Blackhawks Prospect Pyramid!

•   I’ve never been a fan of listing prospects in numerical fashion. I know others do it that way, and it may work for them, but not me. Arguing the difference between why a player is ranked No. 7 instead of No. 12, or not ranked at all over being ranked No. 22 gives me more headaches than it’s worth. So a system where each prospect can fit a certain level, tier, or class, rather than a number in line, makes more sense to me. I can’t wait to share the full pyramid with you all very soon!

•   A player that will be on the pyramid is Brandon Hagel and today he turns 23-years-old. Any word on another Dunkin Donuts coupon??

•   Hagel is one of those players that could very well be an important piece to the Blackhawks’ future. He signed a three-year extension earlier this month, so he’ll have a chance to make that impact over the next few seasons.

•   Another player that has already proven his worth to the Blackhawks, and won’t be listed on the pyramid, is Alex DeBrincat. After his bounce-back performance last season where he was scoring goals on a 50-goal pace over an 82-game season, DeBrincat looks primed to be a breakout superstar in the league with Chicago. And he’ll need his trusty Sherwood Rekker Element 1 twig to do so…

•   Looking good with that “A” on his sweater, too.

•   A former teammate of DeBrincat’s, Connor McDavid, posted a random video yesterday of him stretching before a workout. I don’t know why this is entrancing but it is…

•   Good to know that I stretch more vigorously before a workout than McDavid does. Then again, when you’re a world-class athlete who probably works out every day, you might need to stretch a little less than a 31-year-old rec league athlete who currently weighs the most he ever has in his life. Just, you know, for example.

•   From one 2021 NHL award winner to another, Marc-André Fleury and his family had a beautiful photo op with the Vezina Trophy yesterday.

•   Fleury is coming to Chicago as the new guy, but he is coming into a tram that will need him to be the guy when it comes to tending the goal.

•   Speaking of new guys, Colby Cohen has been hired by the Blackhawks and by NBC Sports Chicago ahead of the season to work in a bunch of different media roles…

•   Cohen, who has worked in hockey broadcasting for a number of years now with ESPN, Westwood One, and NBC Sports in the past, will do work on multiple channels for the Blackhawks, including digital and social media content, and his role with NBC Sports Chicago will be as an in-studio analyst and a part-time fill-in for Eddie Olczyk on the broadcast. The addition of Cohen to NBC Sports Chicago also comes with the departures of Steve Konroyd and Jamal Mayers from the studio broadcasts.

•   Last night was another installment of the heated rivalry between the U.S. and Canada in the final preliminary round game for both teams at the IIHF Women’s World Championships. Needless to say, while the action was physical and intense on the ice, the scoreboard told a different story as Canada routed the U.S. to win Group A.

•   Yeah, I may or may not have, but definitely did, jinx Team USA in yesterday’s bullets post…

•  My bad. With the loss to Canada, the U.S. finish second in Group A and move on to the elimination round of the tournament, while Canada wins the group, out-scoring opponents 20-5 through the preliminary round.

•   Here’s how the IIHF Women’s World Championships quarterfinals round shapes up…

•   Team USA will take on Group B runner-up Japan on Saturday, puck drop at 2:30 p.m. CT. The game can be found on NHL Network. The U.S. defeated Japan in the quarterfinals of the 2019 World Championships, again, not trying to jinx it…damn it.

•   That will do it for today. Hope you all enjoy your TGIF Friday!



Author: Mario Tirabassi

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