On Wednesday afternoon, the AHL announced its first AHL Top Prospects Team for the 2022-23 season. Among the six players named is Blackhawks forward Lukas Reichel.
Reichel, 21, posted 20 goals and 31 assists in 55 games for the IceHogs this past season. He added 15 points in 23 games with the Blackhawks at the NHL level. He was one of three IceHogs named to the AHL All-Star game.
The Blackhawks selected Reichel 17th overall in the 2020 NHL Draft. Over two professional seasons, the German forward has scored 41 goals with 67 assists for 108 points in 111 games for Rockford.
As the Blackhawks enter the next stage of their rebuild, Reichel is viewed as an important piece of the future. He is the best forward in the current system with a contract; Connor Bedard will change all of that in three weeks when the Blackhawks select him first overall.
Chicago’s new front office has been patient with Reichel’s development over the past two seasons, but he got a long look at the NHL level this past season. His speed was evident and his playmaking ability stood out on a team that, after the trade deadline, lacked an igniter for the offense.
With the roster wide open for next year and his success in Rockford, we can safely assume Reichel will be getting a lot of run in Chicago moving forward. Whether or not he skates with Bedard on the top line in the NHL is to be determined.