This is going to be an interesting week for Blackhawks fans — again. Last week gave us the drama of the draft; this week, free agency begins on Wednesday and general manager Kyle Davidson could be busy making deals once again. But the future will be on display in Chicago as the Hawks host their annual Development Camp.
- The Blackhawks Development Camp opens on Monday at 10 AM at Fifth Third Arena and is open to the public. All 11 of Chicago’s 2022 draft picks are expected to be in attendance, so we’ll get our first look at how this year’s picks look against other recent selections on the ice.
- We’ll be in the house for all five days of practices this week. One player I’m especially interested to watch now is Colton Dach, the Blackhawks’ second-round pick last year. Now that his brother has been traded out of town, how engaged is he in the process? How does he look next to the nine forwards Chicago drafted this past week?
- I’m also excited to watch Drew Commesso in person. He’s considered the future in net for the Blackhawks and played in the Olympics this past season. He’s one of five netminders on the roster this week.
- We know some of the young defensemen in the system and saw the highlight packages of the two picked in last week’s draft. But we haven’t seen much/anything from Filip Roos, who signed as an undrafted European free agent early in the summer. Lots of fans forgot he was part of the mix for the NHL roster but he very much is; he’s Davidson’s first European signing.
- The Blackhawks need to make qualifying offers to their restricted free agents, and they’ll reportedly only do so with two of their RFAs: Caleb Jones and Philipp Kurashev.
- That means Dylan Strome, Dominik Kubalík, Wyatt Kalynuk, Andrei Altybarmakyan, Cam Morrison, and Cale Morris will all hit the open market on Wednesday assuming their rights aren’t traded (which no QO crushes the chances of happening).
- Remember the Canadiens’ trade with the Islanders to get the 13th overall pick, which was subsequently flipped to the Blackhawks for Kirby Dach? Well, there may be complications in that trade’s return for the Isles.
- The Avs got a three-year deal done with their new starting goaltender on Sunday.
- And, finally, if you need a smile (most Blackhawks fans do this week), we offer this reality: Willson and William Contreras are both headed to LA for the All-Star Game.