2021 NHL Draft Profile: Zachary Bolduc
The Chicago Blackhawks own the 11th overall selection in the first round of the 2021 NHL Draft. We’re offering some thoughts on players the Hawks might consider when they’re on the clock at this year’s draft.
Thus far we have discussed forwards Matthew Coronado, Chaz Lucius, Mason McTavish, Aatu Raty and Brennan Othmann and Cole Sillinger. Now let’s talk about Zachary Bolduc.
6-1 / 175
Rimouski Océanic (QMJHL)
Ranked #16 by TSN/McKenzie
Ranked #17 by NHL CENTRAL SCOUTING (NA Skaters)
Ranked #56 by MCKEEN’S HOCKEY
Ranked #34 by DOBBERPROSPECTS
Ranked #29 by CONSOLIDATED RANKING
Ranked #45 by ELITEPROSPECTS.COM
Ranked #25 by FCHOCKEY
Ranked #28 by NEUTRAL ZONE
Ranked #16 by SPORTSNET’S
Ranked #23 by RECRUIT SCOUTING
Ranked #16 by DRAFT PROSPECTS HOCKEY
Ranked #43 by SMAHT SCOUTING
Ranked #26 by THE PUCK AUTHORITY
From Corey Pronman (The Athletic)
#33 overall prospect
Puck Skills: Average
Hockey Sense: Below-average
“Bolduc’s numbers were good (29 points in 27 games), not as great as expected but he got better as the season went on to build off his strong underage season. Bolduc is a talented forward who has a lot of elements that will translate to the pro game. He can skate well and make highly skilled plays on the move. Bolduc has very good hand-eye coordination, showing the ability to make unique plays in small areas and around the net. He doesn’t have the hard, long-range shot, but Bolduc has shown he can score goals and do so by capitalizing on his chances in the slot and net areas. He can see the ice well enough, making creative plays and moving the puck where he needs to even if that’s not his top asset. His compete is good enough. Bolduc won’t run guys over or be your top competitor but he wins enough battles. In a sentence, Bolduc projects as a middle-six forward, at either center or the wing in the NHL.”
From Chris Peters’ Hockey Sense
#26 overall prospect
“Bolduc’s star was on the rise coming into the season after he put up 52 points in 55 games as a QMJHL rookie. This season, Bolduc averaged over a point per game, but I think even more offensive dominance was expected of him. An injury knocked him out of the season early, though. Bolduc has a solid frame that he can tack strength onto and good soft-touch skills with excellent offensive timing. I’d like to see him be a bit tougher to play against down low and get a little more of a work rate in the corners. He also strikes me as more of a finisher than a play driver, which is fine. Bolduc’s skill and offensive sense put him in the discussion to be a future top-six forward at the next level.”
Bolduc is a solid skater. He could stand to work on his first step and his acceleration, but it isn’t a weakness. If he can lengthen his stride though, it will be even better. His top-end speed is well-above average. Bolduc keeps up with the play and can threaten defenders off the rush. Where he really excels is in his edgework and agility. He can change directions on a dime and his shiftiness allows him to beat defenders through the neutral zone. It also allows him to make a quick shift in position in the offensive zone to create a passing or shooting lane. Bolduc can get stronger though. As he adds strength to his lower body, he will improve his balance and ability to win battles on the boards.
Bolduc has an excellent wrist shot, snap shot and slap shot. He is accurate and shows good power. His wrist shot and snap shot also feature a decent release but there is a bit of room to improve. Bolduc loves to shoot and will take shots from anywhere on the ice. With his good shot, he can score from the perimeter on junior goalies. That said, he’s not afraid to go to the dirty areas of the ice and can score from inside the home plate area as well. He might even shoot a bit too much, to the detriment of his passing skills and making plays to drive the net at times.
Bolduc’s stickhandling is inconsistent. There are nights where he can dangle through traffic and make plays. There are other nights where he seems to lose the puck easily. He also has some inconsistency in his playmaking. He has the skill to put the puck through tight areas, but he doesn’t always make the right play. There is some question about his patience as he seems to rush things at times. One can also question his vision and whether he takes the time to see all that is available to him.
Bolduc’s defensive game is a bit of a work in progress. He needs to be more disciplined in his assignments as he can get caught puck watching and lose his man away from the play. He also has a tendency to fly the zone early, looking for the long breakaway pass but leaving his team at a disadvantage if they don’t exit the zone successfully. When he is in good position, Bolduc favours a poke check or a stick lift vs taking the body. He doesn’t always get involved in physical battles down low. When a turnover is created, Bolduc can sometimes rush things. He doesn’t always make the smart play in transition, instead, he looks to get it off his stick quickly. This can lead to him rushing a dump off the glass or creating an icing instead of making a play. This is an area he will need to improve.
Projection and Comparison
Bolduc is a bit of a boom or bust prospect. There are aspects of his game that are very high-end and show the ability to be a top-line player. However, he is wildly inconsistent. There are also games where he just isn’t noticeable on the ice. With his defensive issues and his questionable vision and hockey IQ, he will be best suited to be a winger than a centre at the next level. If he can work on these things, and even improve them a little, he could become a solid NHL player. However, if he does not, he will be the type of player who drives coaches and fanbases crazy as the untapped potential is obvious. When he is at his best, Bolduc’s game resembles Jakub Vrana, but this is a stylistic comparison only and not one based on skill and ability.
53 thoughts on “2021 NHL Draft Profile: Zachary Bolduc”
Come on,this prospect listed as a potential #11 pick???? Wildly inconsistent,avoids physical contact,favors the poke check instead of body checking,games where he is barely noticeable. Don’t the Hawks have enough of these types of players? Hard pass on this prospect in any round.
Tab, can you rank the rankers?
The rankings are all over the board and has me wondering which source doing the ranking has the best track record. In politics, you pretty much know who is accurate and who is not (or a shill). Can you offer some perspective on all these rankings?
Tab – To me it seems more likely the Hawks pick someone who falls to them like Edvinsson Johnson or even Wallstaedt than reach for someone like Bolduc
Wouldn’t mind a profile on the three above although I’m guessing you have those in mind as we get closer to the draft
Lazerus of Athletic has an interview piece with Captain Johnny. They talk about JT struggles with health and his low times recently. JT claims he had covid in early 2020 as it was first taking effect and now is a long hauler. He also defends JC for not playing him late in the playoffs when he clearly had no gas left in his physical tank, as he was struggling with his health.
I’m hoping that is also a mending of fences that would be crucial for the building of a stronger team going forward. We need him to be committed to the team, both management and players.
Wrap, I agree with your post. Normally I’m less than enthusiastic about taking a goalie in the 1st round, but after considering the guys Tab has been highlighting lately, I’m warming to the idea of taking a goalie at #11.
ER – for goalies in the first round it’s not just Wallstaedt but also Sebastian Cossa who is 6’6″ and athletic and some have ranked ahead or basically tied with Wallstaedt
Wrap, right and both could go in the top half of the 1st round. Ideally both will get selected in the top-10 and one of the top-10 skaters fall to the Hawks.
I keep banging the drum for Wallstedt because after the first 9 picks(Power, Beniers, Clarke, Hughes, Johnson, Edvinsson, Eklund, McTavish, Guenther not necessarily in this order), I don’t see a ton of separation between the next 7-8 picks(although I do love Fyodor and he’s my ”Lundell” this year)..but I digress. I would rather have the top ranked goalie than the 4th or 5th ranked winger/center..trying to find an elite prospect at 11, regardless of position, should be the goal in the first round. However, here’s a scenario that could easily happen on draft day and I’d like to get everyone’s opinion on what should be done if this occurs:
The first nine picks come off the board in a predictable way(meaning the nine players referenced above are all gone). Ottawa drafts Wallstedt at 10. The Hawks are on the clock at 11. What do the Hawks do and what should they do? They can draft the highest rated forward still on their board-perhaps it’s Fyodor, or Sillinger, or Lucius..or perhaps they take the second best goalie prospect in Cossa(they may even have him rated higher than Wallstedt on their own board)..or, and I think this is what I would at least explore, do they see if a team behind them is interested in Cossa, and if so, move back and try to grab an additional second or third rounder? It may be worth it if they have a similar grade on the next 10 players..but I’m interested in hearing what others think..
Maybe get him with a second round
Danault should be look at for the Hawks …we can get him at 3.5 millions/ year 3 year contract..good on faceoff,good on Defence, good player for all kind of situation 6 ft 200 pounds rarely hurt and just turn 28 a few months ago …we need a player like him big time.
SL7 that is what I was saying. Thinking ED looking for goalie but they only have a their 1st round then 4th round. Give ED our #1 for their #1 in ’21 & ’22. Send Keith to them for Kassian and we’ll take the money that they are paying Lucic and Sekera.
Hawk10 Danault asking for $6mil.
2010 can’t see Habs letting Danault and being from Quebec i doubt he wants to go anywhere, but would love to see him signed too reasonably.
Saw Bolduc play a couple of games last year none this year but was alot more impressed with what i saw than what i read here. Think there is good possibility pick no. 11 could be moved as well.
JR, Sekera is a buyout, can’t be traded because there is no longer a valid contract with a caphit to move.
Keith and Z to Vanc and we take Eriksson and Holtby and a #2
It’s hard to imagine any scenario playing out where Keith goes to Vancouver.
Didn’t the Sedins just get employed by the team as special advisors to Benning?
Think these players are a range of players to pick from in a range not who Tab wants/thinks/is good for us to pick.
So far we want?
Those are first two wants the most?
Good thoughts. Dunks cant go to VAN its against our religion.
Seeing the Flatlander/Perry get smeared into the wall was like Hoss/Hockey God using his finger. The finger of God.
Loved. Loved Sharpy smile as the cameras came on he was still smiling at it.
Being an original six team the name and logo Blackhawks should ne grandfathered in to the end of time.
Slayer, I’m not opposed to the idea of trading back with a team wanting either of the those goalies because I agree there isn’t much separation between the skaters after the top 9 or 10 and none of them excite me nearly as much as Reichel did at #17 last year.
However, I also wouldn’t be opposed to selecting the goalie because it would solidify the organizations depth in young goalies with Lankinen already proven he can be a serviceable NHL goalie and Commesso and Soderblom already in the pipeline. It’s been a long time since the Hawks had more than one young goalie prospect with a legitimate NHL projection and I kind of like the idea of it being a strength that can be leveraged in the future.
Hello Slayer. I tend to agree with you here. As you suggest, if picks 1-10 go the way you have predicted, if we choose to draft at 11, the best options for the hawks are the ones you have suggested as well…..Fyodor, Sillinger, Lucius, or if it`s a goalie then Cossa. Based on the underwhelming choices and reviews for most of the draft class after the top 10 ( is it just me or do almost all of the potential mock picks between 10 and 20 seem to have warts on them, in fact many of these might be no better than second rounders in a better draft ) then I`d certainly consider the goalie Cossa simply because he has the best chance of being an impact player in the NHL which is what you might expect from a pick at the # 11 position. If not Cossa, then I agree, trading back a few spots to pick up additional draft capital might be the way to go. I guess it depends again on what extra picks you can get for moving back and how many spots to you drop.
Hello Slayer. I tend to agree with you. If picks 1-10 go as you have predicted, and assuming that the hawks decide to pick at # 11, then your suggestions of Fyodor, Sillinger, Lucius, or the goalie Cossa seem to make the most sense. Based on what I`ve read on most of the prospects available in the 10-20 spot, the majority of them seem to have significant flaws in some aspect of their game which is quite surprising and concerning. If we`re picking the best player at # 11, I think the goalie Cossa has the best chance of being an impact player in the NHL which is what you expect from a pick in that position. Outside of Fyodor I don`t think we can say that about any of these other prospects available from the 11th position on.
If the hawks don`t want to draft a goalie at #11, then perhaps moving back a few spots to obtain some additional draft capital is a smart move.. Depends I guess on what extra picks (s ) you might obtain and how far back do you drop to get those picks.
Hawks2010- Danault turned down a 5 year, $28 million extension offer from Montreal prior to the season starting.
Slayer, 9 out of 10 Mock Drafts that I looked at had the Wings taking Wallstedt at #6 but who knows. I also saw an Expansion Mock Draft and the Kracken are going to be able to put together a team that is light years ahead of the Hawks. I think it will remind us of the Vegas team their 1st year but with much better D men. Adam Graves,Matt Dumba,Jake Bean,Gudas,Forsling, those are just a few that stuck out to me that are their expected picks.The forwards they are expected to take were also impressive. The Mock had the Hawks losing Subban.
I don’t mind Cossa at 11 although based on other drafts there is often an unexpected pick or two in the first ten
Some mocks have Edvinsson going after 11 and some have Sillinger in top 10 for example
I still think there’s a good chance that happens this year – if not I’m fine with one of the goalies and probably prefer that to trading back
Danault also said he want to be on the top 2 line …so maybe he would consider playing for less iff he plays on second lire ?
Am I wrong …I don’t think 6 millions is acceptable for the game he plays .
I really like him since I saw him play in Victo
Apologies on my re-post. First one didn`t go through at the time so I re-posted and this morning I see the original came through.
Hawks2010- Danault DOES play on their top two. He’s been their 1C much of the season. He’s a great defensive center who wins faceoffs, but not much in terms of scoring. He’s about a 1/2 ppg player over his career. In game 3 against Tampa, he scored his first goal of the playoffs and has added just 3 assists. No way I’d give him anywhere near the offer he turned down.
I like this the most in that order/good with any of these. So I would go with best available/for the type we need FW unless we can get the D guy here.
Seeing we can get top pair Defensemen from ufa like Jones/or trade before with contract in place or ufa others or tradeline like Mcdount/here you need to be the team that will trade to you where ufa is easier in that reguard. Point is its easier to get top pair guys from ufa then draft/trade.
We need two so just do it which ever way/get them!
Look at TB they got half of there D guys from ufa/tradeline so its only half from draft/within. Lets do the same.
I donot care if were not close yet/you have to get them at some point/ Start collecting what we need and we can finetune later.
I am good with players like 12 because he can be good/get better at D then Bread Man is. To me 12 is the better Sharpy spot then Bread Man/and I love the bread.
What are we doing here/building the best 23man we can and it has to/HAS TO have enough size and many many hardnose players and not many slow.
Add the teo top pair guys and a bunch of hardnosers like Shaw/Danault/Barratt and like bottom six players who are hardnose and have some dump in cycle hit skill. We can do this because we donot have any yet.
So get some men on the assembly line then.
W know were going to be a top 10-15 team in 24 mths still we need to get a lot of players in here from within/and ufa-tarde-tradeline taht are fast and hardnose.
Nothing agasint the office people or who did what/I donot give a shit about that stuff just that I do care a lot that it will make us what we want to get to so its a very good thing that it happened at this moment in time/not during the dynasty yrs. Very good thing this thing happened because its gets us to where were going to back to top 5 team again. So good then.
After draft lets list an ideal/within reason-theres no team that will have a dynsty again in salary cap era. ideal 23man roster with the type of players we need that Tim/others say we need and most/98% agree with here. Who we have to keep and trade and what to add. That list will be fun to make.
I look at only positive thingd from/afer this sex success yrs back in 2010-2015 since it will get us to do qhat we need to faster.
And if name changes at any time to me were alwasy the Blackhawks. If they ever did anything to the logo it has to be native looking because the indian head we have is the most iconic logo in all of sports/how can change that because some poepple are too senitive/pantsys. SUck it up logos/names are not abusing/killing you/anyone.
Danault at 6m is fine its like 4m from the yrs 2005-2010 and like then a Bicks caphit. Hes not the 220 pounds size player spot he is thought an ideal playoff player you want and need a bery good 200 ft player like a Hoss Saad kind of player. Might not score as much as you want from a 4m which is now 6m player though a needed player to win with.
Danault on a legit top 16 team/MTL is a 18th place team and that is wth an 100% all candian division sch. Danault is a player to win the Cup with/not on a team like MTL.
MTL would get blwon out by TB or BOS in 1st round every yr if they made playoffs with a normal sch.
At .5 points per game yea 5.5m or 6m seems too much but for right now while were building 23man why not its not like hes signing for 8 yrs and we donot have to do salary cap perfect untl young wave/elites need high caphits and by then Danaukt would be close to his 5 yrs anyways.
19 24 77
12 ? 88
Rei 19 77
12 24 88
Mo, nicely said. I find myself singing from the same hymnal as you more times than not.
I think trading Keith is the right thing to do regardless of the return. It’s right for him and it’s right for the rebuild. Keith will not be part of the rebuilt Hawks so it’s better to move him out now and give his ice time to young players who could be a part of the rebuilt Hawks. It doesn’t matter if it can be argued he was one of the better Hawks d-men in 2020/21 because 2021/22 will be another rebuilding year. The primary objective for the 2021/22 season must be growing the future core players over and above win/loss record.
Another reason to trade Keith is to not have to expose one of Stillman, Zadorov or Murphy in the expansion draft. While I don’t think losing any of those players would be a crippling blow to the rebuild – losing one of them for nothing should be avoided if possible. All three of them could be part of the rebuilt Hawks and are worth keeping, including Zadorov unless his salary demands outstrip his worth.
I would have no problem starting 2021/22 with this d-corps to get Boqvist, Kalynuk and Stillman 60+ games next season:
EB, I think it’s the you can’t teach an old dog new tricks but the old dog can teach the young dogs a few things. Colliton’s system plus closer to his son and team that he can play more to his strength, makes for a better way to ride out his final 2 years.
Seems fairly obvious to me from their comments that players, coaches nor front office see this team as anywhere near early rebuild stages, injuries and goalie situation caused the brakes to be put on last year and step back but next year they want this team to definitely be a playoff team and will add at least one impact defenseman to the fold this summer. Likely going to see a few more players besides Keith being moved before next season.
ER, tahts the thing I have my own ideas and they are for the good not to bitch whine complain sue for racism/logos/names like a Panstys.
Donot agree with everyone on everything and same for others my ideas/fine whatever. Point we each have ideas for getting the best 23man.
Anything else the whiners or other team fan people should only visit once a yr and then go/take off eh.
Take off you Hosers!
I hope Hawks management doesn’t change course from the rebuild because the objective is to win the Cup – not make the playoffs before the team is good enough to win the Cup. There is a real danger of ending up mired in mediocrity for years to come if the Hawks aren’t willing to be patient with the process of rebuilding. If making the playoffs happens incidentally – that would be fine, but it shouldn’t take precedence over the primary objective of rebuilding the team to be a Cup contender as soon as possible.
That’s just it they aren’t changing course, they are doing what was being said along from everything i have heard.
I believe Bowman and Colliton would throw their mothers under a bus to make the playoffs next year. They tried desperately this year, development be damned, and failed.
I would like to believe the Blackhawks’ objective is to win a Stanley Cup. However, they purposely avoid saying that and use wiggle words like ‘make progress’, ‘be a playoff team’, etc.. Anything but saying the goal is to win the Stanley Cup.
It is naive to think that Bowman’s and Colliton’s egos will not prioritize short-term progress at the cost of long-term results. They are desperate. Both know damned well they’re on the bubble. Especially now for Bendover Bowman.
Galt – unfortunately your dislike for Bowman and Colliton is clouding your thinking. It’s apparent you know about hockey, but your hate bias distorts your view.
An undermanned team, which I think everyone on this board agrees the Hawks were last season, would not have traded their best player in front of the net on the PP and a reliable faceoff man in Soderberg, or traded one of their top 5 talented offensive weapons and a top 3 skater if not top skater Mattias Janmark at the deadline for non-current help to the roster if they were trying desperately to make the playoffs. Seriously? I believe you know that, but you simply can’t pass on a shot at Bowman and Colliton. Credibility be damned – cheap shot be done.
Sadly, we have too many Walldogs and not enough Morrisons on the board. But we all, including me, are entitled to post what we want. Thanks Tab for that opportunity.
I call them the way I see them. That is WHY I don’t like Bowman and Colliton. Not the other way around.
It’s naive to think a biased viewpoint can present an unbiased view.
I see no evidence the “youth movement rebuild” was not executed last season. Nor do I see any evidence the rebuild will not continue in 2021/22.
I would be naive to believe I’m able to sit in judgement of every proactive and reactive machination the Hawks made last season as if I expect to see a linear progression mapped out to my satisfaction.
The game is played strategically where sometimes tactical moves seem counterproductive. If, at the end of the 2021/22 season, the Hawks are closer to having a rebuilt roster in place – then the season was a success regardless if every individual move made was understood by those of us on the outside of the Hawks management team … and regardless if they make the playoffs or not.
ER, tahts the ticket top 5 or bottom 5 or whats the point. I guess when your an original you want to win the Cup and make it happen when you can do dynasty dreams. When your a team just to be in the league for local/state pride hey its there dream just to be a playoff team and not win/reality. Salary cap helps them more then top teams.
Anyways I would not ever want to be like EDM TOR MTL and be good but not in it to win it. The only way MTL NYR/14 NJ/12 could win is if they played each other in finals but hey not everybody has to play top 5 teams in 1st round like we did or STL did. It makes a path for those teams in the east only SAN wasnt a top team in final for all Cambell conference teams since 2008.
I do think we need to rebuild slightly different then we did in 2008 because we cant dynasty again/noone can.
So lets reload and win one at a time this time. We already achieved the hardest thing to do in hockey and win 4 in 6 yrs really.
Now that we ve done that and that will always be the highlight of Blackhawks Cups and of this 25 yrs of hockey/maybe 50 or more. Lets go one at a time now.
ER & SS, please drag me from the quagmire of ignorance that I am wallowing in.
Please share with me what the STATED objective of the Blackhawks is (not your opinion – what the Blackhawks have stated).
Please share with me what the STRATEGY is beyond simply “rebuild” (not your opinion – what the Blackhawks have stated).
I honestly do not know what the Blackhawks’ real objective is nor the strategy they are engaged in.
@ebonyraptor..I think that looks about right in terms of the blueliners that we would start the year with if they are able to trade Keith..still not sure what Seattle is going to do in terms of the expansion draft..they could easily take DeHaan..if they don’t then the pairings below are how I would set our blueline..Let Kalynuk-Boqvist be the offensive draw/pp pairing while leaving DeHaan/Murphy and Zadorov/Stillman to be more stay at home and take on pk duties..
If Seattle does take DeHaan, then I would move Stillman up to pair with Murphy and Zadorov-Mitchell would make up my third pairing..obviously, neither scenario is ideal but this is what the Hawks have to work with barring a significant addition via free agency or trade..the blueline still needs a lot of work..
Worked hard all day tree trimming and yardwork in 90 degree weather – my old geezer body is drained. I have no energy or desire to play games answering facetious questions, especially when I know it won’t make a damn bit of difference.
Here’s the good news. We all want the Hawks to be successful as soon as possible. I believe a rebuild of the team is necessary and I have faith in those at the helm and have patience to see it through. Others feel differently. So be it and the world goes round.
I wish I was as certain as you that “we all want the Hawks to be successful as soon as possible”. I take a slightly more cynical view: I think some agree with that comment, while others like to be, well, Walldogs.
ER, hey brother my dog got cancer last yr and is doing good with treatments/vac. My sisters kid died 2 mths ago at 27. So I have been doing the grass like noone before.
Hardtimes are not money stuff they are these.
Blackhawks be back and before Tazer and Kaner have something to say/do about it.
Han Solo was still there for the next generation. 19 88 are just like the Solo quality.
Grass = kentucky blue grass.
I wasn’t really complaining about my tiring and sweaty day – it’s what I do with my time in retirement – just that the heat/humidity zapped me today and I wasn’t in the mood for nonsense. I actually like doing yardwork because it’s something my wife and I do together and we like keeping our property looking nice … as long as I get my afternoon nap – life is good. :-)
EB&SS, i am not so much disagreeing with your opinion as to what would be best way to proceed, as i am saying, from i have heard from those involved, that doesn’t seem to be what is going on. Obviously last season without injuries to Dach and Nylander, plus Toews illness, failed attempts to sign Crawford, Matt Murray, the seasons goals and hopes would have been very much different. Janmark was signed before that was known and Soderberg was to fill a void left by Toews and would’ ve walked as would’ve Janmark too, so trading them at tdl had nothing to with preseason goals that they were forced to re-evaluate.
Ian – I think you may have misunderstood my comments about Janmark and Soderberg. My point to Gault, who claimed that Bowman and Colliton were desperately trying to make the playoffs:
“They tried desperately this year, development be damned, and failed.”
His comment simply doesn’t sync up with selling 2 of the more important assets on the team at the TDL. That’s all my post was about.
I personally think we had a great year in development and at TDL, and have no issues with those situations. In my opinion – Bowman had a very good TDL. Stillman and Gaudette are nice assets and give some more flexibility going forward.
What I don’t understand is all the love for Hamilton, clearly an offensive defenseman whose defense is offensive at times!! Right hand shot – I thought there was a kid being groomed for that position, a PP QB type of offensive defenseman on the right side. Anyone remember him?
I think his name is Boqvist.
Hamilton doesn’t just get in the way of his growth, but actually replaces his need.
Jones is a far better fit, and either one is expensive and not needed at the moment, in my opinion. We need to develop our kid Dmen, not put roadblocks in their way.
SS I totally agree grow our own offensive Dman. It takes minimum 4 yrs for a Dman to become good then become great. I believe both Boqvist and Beaudin will become good offensive Dmen. What we need is a Stevens Pronger someone that forwards watch out for when crossing the blue line or even mid ice. Think Montour could be that guy.
SS i did misunderstand your comment sorry, i was very happy with development as well but i still believe Lankinen, Kurashev, Hagel, etc. wouldn’t have gotten the chances or at least greatly reduced roles they got, if planB wasn’t needed for this season.
Hamilton is probably biggest impact ufa defenseman available, is he best fit, agree i would sooner Jones too. Think i’d prefer OEL ahead of Hamilton as well. If you look at finals, Tampa has a defense that can play any type of game, finesse, physical, drive the offense and protect a lead at a very high level. Doesn’t have to be a pound for thing just to have that kind of versatility on your blueline is huge. Their speed among the forwards sets them apart, Habs had speed advantage in earlier series but can’t match Lightnings speed. Blackhawks need to match that kind of team effort to go with skill. Guy between the pipes being elite os a must too.
One thing is after TB gets a little old like we did then they wont be that much better then every other team and they have it easier now then we did as there is only a couple top teams now when we did dynasty there was a bunch of top teams.
Point is once they get a little older there wont be a team that deep and good anymore so we still need what your saying/Ian just not have to beat a team like TB or CHI dysnatys teams anymore.
The whole league got watered down it just took TB longer to do so because they were younger. Every top 10 team from last decade is not anymore/other then BOS but they reloaded when they woundlt pay there players what they deserved and got 4 1sts from it.
So once TB is older then its a reset as top teams wont be what they were from 2008-2015. 2016-2021 league was watered down and TB was left standing alone with no other top teams for 5 yrs.
Going to be fun again then. 2025 is a good yr.