No TV Tonight, More Thoughts on Game One, ESPN Hates the Blackhawks, Slaggert SZN, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

Well, we got our first look at the 2022-23 Blackhawks last night. Sort of. There were a bunch of guys in the lineup who are headed to Rockford or back to junior, but there were a few mainstays on the ice. There were plenty of coachable moments last night and the learning curve has just started.

  • Tonight, you won’t be able to watch the Blackhawks game. Because there isn’t a local broadcast crew, and the game is designated as an ESPN+ game, fans in Detroit will get their local call but we won’t get to see anything tonight. So, on to the next one.
  • The penalty kill was bad last night. But head coach Luke Richardson quickly noted in his postgame comments that they saw correctable errors. And, as a significant reminder, this was a preseason game. There were a number of key penalty killers who didn’t dress for the game, so while the systems are still a work in progress the full compliment of NHL players being available to kill penalties will hopefully improve the performance of that unit.
  • In our 4 takeaways from the game, we noted that Kevin Korchinski continues to look like the real deal. When he spoke to the media after the game, his confidence was still there, and now he has some specific areas of improvement to focus on moving forward. There’s no question his speed will play at the next level. He’s an exciting prospect.
  • The line of Patrick Kane, Max Domi and Andreas Athanasiou is going to generate plenty of chances this year. Their speed was impressive. There were some preseason puck handling issues and a few near misses but that line could be dynamic for the Hawks. Which will help the eventual trade value of… all three… hopefully. Domi won 71 percent of his faceoffs, which is fantastic.
  • The good news is the Blackhawks and Blues each scored once at even strength.
  • Taylor Raddysh had a few moments where he could have had great chances but fumbled the puck. He wasn’t along in trying to handle grenades in traffic but as he gets into the flow he could have a great opportunity to produce this year as well.
  • In our Twitter poll this morning we want to know who impressed you most last night. Let us know!
  • The fine people at ESPN have never been shy about giving Chicago little/no love whatsoever. So when their preseason organizational futures power rankings plopped the Hawks in dead last (32nd out of 32) we weren’t surprised.
  • One thing that was a little bit of a push on this was it includes the organization’s present and future — so prospect pool and the potential in players already drafted/signed was considered. ESPN has the Blackhawks’ prospect base ranked 16th in the league.
  • Of course, if the Blackhawks land one of the top three players in next year’s draft, that rank will change dramatically.
  • We’re also going to call BS on the Blackhawks ranking 22nd out of 32 teams in the Contracts/Cap category. According to CapFriendly, only four teams have more cap space than the Blackhawks right now. And the Blackhawks only have three players on their current NHL roster — Seth Jones, Connor Murphy and Jake McCabe — signed beyond the 2023-24 season. So they have one contract with any kind of questionable term left, that puts them in the bottom third of the league? C’mon man… that’s ridiculous.
  • We got some Landon Slaggert love all over the twitterverse on Tuesday. First, the Big Ten conference called him out for having one helluva resume heading into his junior year.
  • Then the Irish announced Nick Leivermann will be their captain this season with Trevor Janicke and Slaggert named alternates. Leivermann is a returning graduate and Slaggert’s a junior so this is a nice nod to Slaggs. Love to see it. Might need to buy one of those 19s at some point.
  • The crew at Elite Prospects made this little video about the Blackhawks’ prospect collection. They rank the Blackhawks’ prospect pool 13th in the NHL.
  • Finally, it feels like a good morning to celebrate terrific performances from our elders. And Sister Jean did the thing last night.
  • written by

    Tab Bamford has been writing about the Chicago Blackhawks for almost two decades. He joined Bleacher Nation as the lead Blackhawks writer in May 2022. Tab is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers Association and is the author of two books about the Blackhawks: "100 Things Blackhawks Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die" (Triumph Books) and "Chicago Blackhawks: An Illustrated Timeline" (Reedy Press, 2021). Find him on Twitter/X/Instagram/Threads at @The1Tab

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