Every Friday, over the past few weeks, we’ve been looking back at some long, winding trade trees that have led players to be part of the current Chicago Blackhawks organization (or a prospect who might be in Chicago at some point in the near future). This week, we’re going to discuss center Dylan Strome.
As we get closer to this year’s NHL Draft, the trade rumors will continue to circle the locker of Strome. Earlier, we’ve examined the Blackhawks’ enormous questions at center and looked at how Strome can help the future of the Blackhawks whether he’s in Chicago or elsewhere.
Signs are increasingly pointing to a reality that Strome will be playing for another team when the 2022-23 regular season begins in October. So this tree may have more branches to come. But for now, let’s look at how this tree may help the Blackhawks in more than one way.
• June 27, 2014 — the Blackhawks traded up seven spots in the 2014 NHL Draft to select center Nick Schmaltz. The full trade: Chicago sent their first-round pick (No. 27 forward Nikolay Goldobin) and a third-round pick in the 2014 NHL Draft (No. 62 forward Justin Kirkland) to the San Jose Sharks for pick No. 20 (Schmaltz) and sixth-round pick in the 2014 NHL Draft (No. 179 goalie Ivan Nalimov).
Over parts of three seasons, Schmaltz scored 29 goals in 162 games for the Blackhawks. We’ll get to Goldobin later. Kirkland is now 25 and has not appeared in an NHL game yet. And Nalimov came over for five games with the IceHogs last year but has been in the KHL for the rest of his professional career, including a return to Russia for the 2021-22 campaign.
• Nov. 25, 2018 — the Blackhawks traded Schmaltz to the Coyotes for center Dylan Strome and forward Brendan Perlini.
Schmaltz has had an up-and-down tenure in Arizona, but had a strong 2021-22 season. He had 59 points in 63 games for the Coyotes this season. Strome, meanwhile, produced a career-high 22 goals this past season despite starting the year in Jeremy Colliton’s doghouse.
Perlini appeared in 47 games over two seasons — one early in the 2019-20 season — and scored 12 times for Chicago.
• Oct. 28, 2019 — the Blackhawks traded Perlini to the Detroit Red Wings for defense prospect Alec Regula.
Regula spent some time with the Blackhawks this past season and appears to be a potential piece of the future on the blue line.
Tree Branch Of Note
We’ll call this a seed that fell and grew into a second tree, but it’s always fun to see how players come back around. The player San Jose picked with the 27th overall pick from the original draft day trade that landed Schmaltz in Chicago, Goldobin, has impacted future Blackhawks deals. Amazing, isn’t it?
• March 1, 2017 — the Sharks trade Goldobin to the Canucks in the deal that brought Jannik Hansen. San Jose also acquired a fourth-round pick in the 2017 NHL Draft in that deal.
• June 24, 2017 — the Canucks traded the fourth-round pick acquired in the Hansen trade to the Blackhawks for a fifth-round (No. 135 defenseman Kristoffer Gunnarsson) and sixth-round (No. 181 forward Petrus Palmu) picks in the 2017 NHL Draft. With that fourth-round pick (No. 112 overall) the Blackhawks selected forward Tim Söderlund.
Söderlund appeared in 52 games for the IceHogs over two seasons, scoring just one goal. But…
• July 12, 2021 — the Blackhawks traded Söderlund with Duncan Keith to the Edmonton Oilers for defenseman Caleb Jones and a pick in the 2022 NHL Draft.
The Next Step
• TBD — the Blackhawks trade Strome to… ?
This probably felt like a fairly simple trade tree going in. We all remember Strome for Schmaltz, and Blackhawks fans have mixed emotions about how that trade has panned out for the two teams involved in the years since.
However, when we dig into some of the other branches of this trade tree, we find that there are more players and pieces involved. Ultimately, there may be links from Schmaltz well into the Blackhawks’ future with Regula and the Oilers’ pick in the upcoming draft.