The Blackhawks head down to St. Louis this afternoon for a matinee preseason finale. Saturday could also be the finale in the careers of Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina, but we digress… Let’s talk some puck.
- If you went to bed early on Friday night or logged off the interwebs, you might have missed a late night trade. The Blackhawks sent Riley Stillman to Vancouver for a nice package of Jason Dickinson (meh) and a second-round pick in 2024 (wow!).
- This is a nice deal for Kyle Davidson, who continues to add draft capital in the coming seasons. Davidson is doing exactly what he told us he would do when he became the general manager. The Blackhawks now have two picks in the first, second and third rounds of the the next two draft.
- It doesn’t look like Connor Murphy, Jake McCabe or Caleb Jones will skate in St. Louis tonight, And Stillman is obviously out. So the Blackhawks recalled Isaak Phillips from Rockford on Friday evening.
- Remember when McCabe had significant back surgery and we were lead to believe we wouldn’t see him until the end of November? Yeah, about that… McCabe has been skating with the team throughout the preseason camp in a non-contact jersey. And, on Friday, he swapped that one for a contact jersey. It looks like he might be ready to come back for the home opener now?
- Murphy also returned to regular practice on Friday.
- The trade of Stillman, in the context of McCabe possibly coming back sooner than anticipated and Murphy working his way back, is a really nice move by Davidson. It also tells us he has confidence in the young defensemen the Blackhawks have ready for the NHL. This opens the door for Alex Vlasic and Alec Regula to likely be on the NHL roster to start the season. Phillips and Filip Roos could also be in the mix to start the season if McCabe, Caleb Jones and/or Murphy isn’t ready yet.
- The Blackhawks are officially tied for last place in the Central Division. Yup, for real. The Nashville Predators beat the San Jose Sharks in Prague in a regular season game on Friday afternoon (our time), so they’re alone on top of the NHL standings at 1-0-0. Maybe they’ll hang a banner for that, too?
- In college action, unfortunately two of the Blackhawks’ 2022 draft picks didn’t dress for their respective games on Friday night. Aidan Thompson wasn’t in uniform for Denver against Notre Dame and Frank Nazar didn’t dress for Michigan. Adam Fantilli did play for Michigan, though, and put his first collegiate point on the board.
- Landon Slaggert was right there on the left wing wearing an “A” for Notre Dame, opposite Ryder Rolston, on Friday night against the Thompson-less Pioneers. Rolston scored for Notre Dame, but the Irish lost 5-2.
- Did you read our featured interview with Slaggert yesterday?
- Ethan Del Mastro was officially named the captain of the Mississauga Steelheads for the second straight season on Friday. He then picked up an assist on the Steelheads’ second goal of the night.
- The Juniors Game of the Night for Blackhawks fans could have been Kelowna vs. Seattle in the WHL. We could have had Colton Dach vs. Kevin Korchinski tonight. But Dach was just sent back to Kelowna earlier in the day and obviously wasn’t ready to dress with his team yet (if he’s even there yet).
- Korchinski picked up an assist on this goal.
- Nils Juntorp, a sixth-round pick by the Blackhawks this summer, was in the starting lineup for the Dubuque Fighting Saints in the USHL.
- Finally, since the Blackhawks are gonna be in St. Louis on Saturday anyways… let’s revisit the Cardinals coughing up six (6!) runs in the ninth inning to blow Game One in their wild card series against the Phillies, shall we?
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