Cole Guttman's (Staying) a Blackhawk, Folks!

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Cole Guttman’s (Staying) a Blackhawk, Folks!

Chicago Blackhawks

Friday was an anticlimactic day for lots of people in Blackhawks nation. But not if you’re Cole Guttman.

As we’ve discussed in a couple places, players needed to be on the AHL roster at the 2 PM CT trade deadline to be eligible for the AHL playoffs. The Blackhawks assigned forwards Brett Seney and David Gust and defenseman Isaak Phillips to Rockford on Friday morning.

Which meant Guttman, Lukas Reichel, and a few others were still in Chicago for practice with the NHL team.

That didn’t mean they wouldn’t get assigned to Rockford in time to be eligible to help the IceHogs in the playoffs. And, just before the cutoff, the Blackhawks did assign two more players — Reichel and Joey Anderson — to the IceHogs.

They did not assign Guttman to Rockford.

When general manager Kyle Davidson addressed the media shortly before 3 o’clock in Chicago on Friday, he indicated that Guttman is indeed in Chicago to stay. Davidson also told the media that the plan is for newly acquired forwards Anders Bjork and Austin Wagner to join the Blackhawks and remain in the NHL for the rest of the season. Anderson is also expected to come back to Chicago.

This is part of the Blackhawks not only wanting to reward players who have earned an NHL opportunity — like Guttman — but also the front office very intentionally wanting to put Rockford in a position to make a deep playoff run in the AHL. Davidson has consistently said the organization sees value in building a winning culture at every level, and made moves — including the addition of Rocco Grimaldi to the IceHogs in an AHL transaction — to bolster their chances.

Author: Tab Bamford

Tab is the Lead Blackhawks voice for BN. He is the author of two books about the Blackhawks, most recently "Chicago Blackhawks: An Illustrated Timeline" (Reedy Press, 2021). Find him on Twitter at @The1Tab