Which Prospects Might Join The Blackhawks This Offseason?

On Friday morning, Scott Powers of The Athletic offered some interesting news regarding a number of Blackhawks prospects who may be headed for contracts this offseason.

Lukas Reichel
Center
6-1, 172
Shoots: Left
Acquired: 1st round – 2020 NHL Draft

Reichel, the 17th overall selection by the Blackhawks in the 2020 NHL Draft, has had a strong season for Eisbaren Berlin and appears to be ready to join the professional ranks. He turns 19 on May 17 but would add much-needed center depth to the organization.

Jakub Galvas
Defenseman
5-11, 161
Shoots: Left
Acquired: 5th round – 2017 NHL Draft

Galvas turns 22 on June 15 and his draft rights are set to expire on June 1. As Powers notes, Galvas’ name came up earlier this season when Stan Bowman and assistant general manager of player development Mark Eaton spoke about prospects. He’s a solid, puck-moving defenseman who would add more depth to the pipeline.

Henrik Borgstrom

Henrik Borgström
Center
6-3, 200
Shoots: Left
Acquired: via trade from Florida (April 8, 2021)

Borgström might be a big center who could be part of the Blackhawks NHL roster next year. Bowman spoke about the club’s expectation that they’ll be able to sign him when he was acquired. He’s having a nice postseason in Finland right now and could be an option for a second line center role in Chicago. He turns 24 in August.

Max Shalunov
Forward
6-4, 205
Shoots: Left
Acquired: 4th round – 2011 NHL Draft

This is your annual tease that Shalunov, now 28, will actually come to the NHL. The Blackhawks drafted him ten years ago but he’s happily played in the KHL for years. Now, it appears, he may be ready to come to Chicago. Powers reports the Hawks have spoken with his agent about signing this summer. He’s having a marvelous postseason in Russia right now, making him more tempting for the Blackhawks. However, as Powers points out, because of his age he would not be signing an entry level contract; Shalunov would have to sign a standard player contract. This could be a huge addition to the Blackhawks roster if he decides to come.

Damir Zhafyarov
Forward
5-9, 170
Shoots: Left
Current free agent

Zhafyarov, 27, was ranked the top European free agent by Corey Pronman at The Athletic recently. He scored 21 goals with 40 assists in 58 games for Nizhny Novgorod in the KHL this season. Powers writes that Shalunov and Zhafyarov may be sold to the Hawks as a package deal. From Pronman’s write-up:

“He’s a highly intelligent passer with a good mid-distance shot and individual skill. He’s small, but not soft, and has killed penalties at the KHL level. While he’s a good skater for a 5-foot-9 player, he doesn’t have a true dynamic top gear. But I think he has enough skill and effort in his game to be a bottom-six forward in the NHL.”

27 thoughts on “Which Prospects Might Join The Blackhawks This Offseason?

  1. Hopefully Reichel and Borgstrom play in the NHL next year if not right away then by season’s end

    The double dip of Russians is a very interesting possibility – something to keep an eye on although with Shalunov it’s definitely a case of we’ll believe when we see it

  2. Looking forward to seeing Reichel, noticed since playoffs began he hasn’t been penciled in as 1C regularly. 2 and 3C, plus 1 wing have all been where started playoff games, not sure if he moved during games or not. Borgstrom should be an impact player too, possible both could need some Ahl time first i guess.

    The other 3 the jury is still out on until we see them in a Blackhawks uniform. Galvas most likely as his he becomes a ufa if not signed by the summer.

  3. Subban gets the start tonight and Beaudin in for deHaan – still 7D so I assume the same forward group

    Let’s get a regulation win tonight and make the end of the season exciting whether or not they make it

  4. Shalunov- Is absolutely tearing it up In KHL playoff scoring- Not included in Tab’s Elite Prospects page –12g 6a in 20 games!
    Guessing- He earns Big fat KHL $$$ contract after this post season

    Reichel- is Gonna be stud

    Zhafy- never seen him play– But my readings on him- suggest- He is a “Can’t miss”/over achiever in the mold of Hagel/Suter with more Offense (most likely-cuz he is older/smarter/ more seasoned) than Hagel/Suter. Players who play with him- say Nothing but Good things about him-makes an impact every time on ice. Which kinda sounds a lot like Hagel. Just a guy who is hard NOT to notice.

    Galvas- Good news- has played versus men for years- and played with Dad! In Mens Czech league.
    bad news– when I saw him in camp draft year– kid was skinnier than a wet noodle!!! How he survives in Men’s Hockey league is a mystery.

    Borgstom- the “Magician” magic hands/college- let’s hope he finds them

  5. The Hawks have put themselves in an interesting position this offseason and as Hawks fans, we’re going to be treated to our own version of an MLB ”hot stove” offseason..we have a lot of forwards that will be competing for 13-14 spots..below is just a sample of how the Hawks forward lines could look along with their current cap hit in parenthesis :

    Cat(6.4)-Dach(925,000)-Kane(10.5)
    Kubalik(3.7)-Toews(10.5)-Hagel(rfa)
    Suter(rfa)-Strome(3.0)-Kurashev(842,500)
    Gaudette(rfa)-Kampf(rfa)-Connolly(3.5)
    Carpenter(1.0)
    Nylander(rfa)
    Borgstrom(rfa)
    Hinostroza(ufa)
    Reichel?
    Shalunov?

    That’s potentially 18 forwards without accounting for any of the forwards(Entwhistle, Hardman, Slavin, Barratt, etc.) that are already in Rockford or any other college/euro free agents that the Hawks might be in the mix for. It will be a really interesting offseason with regards to who gets signed, what do they get signed for, etc. Personally, I love it..the more competition the better. If Shalunov does come to the NHL next year, and they sign Borgstrom, does that seal Strome’s fate? I think so. Shalunov has the potential to fit like a glove at 3C and the Hawks have a lot of options at winger for the bottom six. Not sure there is a place for Strome in the bottom six.

    Cat-Dach-Kane
    Suter-Toews-Kubalik
    Hinostroza-Shalunov-Hagel
    Gaudette-Kampf-Carpenter/Kurashev
    Connolly
    Nylander
    Reichel
    Borgstrom

    With Shalunov in place, I really like these lines as a starting point. Who does Strome replace? In terms of wingers, I don’t think Cat, Kane, Kubalik, or Hagel are getting moved from their spots..Suter has definitely earned a spot in the top nine next year and I believe it will be at winger..and then down the middle, it doesn’t look like there is a spot for him either unless we want a very expensive fourth line center. Anyhoo, it’s a good problem to have. Will be interesting to see how the roster construction plays itself out.

  6. Shalunov still have another 3-5 years ahead of him before retirement
    Not sure Reichel will be ready for NHL at 19 except if he can get a 5-7 kilos more .
    Borgstrom is probable more ready but his name finish with Strom ( maybe faster then the one we already have )
    I wonder iff Hagel has a twin brother?
    That would be a nice addition.

  7. Goalie loss Friday against NSH.

    Playoff chances on life support.

    Team added a some grit at deadline, but the team as a whole, does not play with it, cuz they are not taught how.

    Same coach next year?
    Same results next year.

    Status quo. Which is another term for accepting mediocrity, in this case.

    We had status quo for decades under Dollar Bill, who imposed his own style of salary cap on his team while other owners did not.

    A veteran winning NHL coach teaches these young guys the NHL hard tough game, not Euro hockey.

    One style results in long NHL playoff runs, which this squad has the talent to provide.

    The other?
    It’s great for a championship in Switzerland.

    Yeah, you can bitch and whine that my drum banging is tired.

    Don’t care.
    It is the damn truth, and only a fool closes his ears to the truth.

    See Alpo Suhonen for exhibit A.

  8. EB don’t think Arvid Soderblom signed anywhere for next season. In 22 games in shl this year, he had a 2.03 gaa and .922 sv %, could still be an option for an elc for next year.

  9. Hawks2010-

    Reichel will be NHL ready– Hawks may still choose to Season him.
    BUT- He is ready.
    Has played in Men’s league/ is known for his IQ/relentlessness/agility and has same/better numbers as Stutzle did – and Stutzle has had solid 1st year in NHL.

  10. Bluto
    Reichel is presently 18 and weigh 175 pds ..of course he can play but to get hit 15 times per games plus the NHL speed …not sure at all it will be good for him ….anyway
    It’s like when guy’s thought Mitchell was ready and would be a difference maker …..he was ok but had to be sent to Rockford and still not ready now ,of course he will grow up and will preobably become a bottom 4 Dman but not now …..Keith was in Rockford for 2 years I think before becoming a Norris . Don’t need to rush them at 18-19 except if your a superstar.
    But who knows .

  11. Well written article! Here’s my list of prospects I want to evaluate and/or play for the Blackhawks next season:

    Damir Zhafyarov- he wears no. 88. That says it all! Comparable to a Artemi Panarin if he signs with the Blackhawks.

    Josiah Slavin W- I saw Hagel feed him goals in 2019. He was 6’1 at the time when he stroked the puck in from the circle. Now he’s 6’3 weight 190 age 22 and on fire in Rockford. His brother is all-star Jacob Slavin D with the Canes. He is the Blackhawks top prospect imo.

    Alec Regula D- He’s 6’4 weight 207 age 20 Scored 27 goals for the London Knights in 2019-20 season. His father was the Detroit Red Wings dentist.

    Mike Headman W-6-2, weight 205 age 22 played on a Boston College line with 1st round picks Alex Newhook and Matthew Boldy. With a shoot first mentality scored 10 goals in 24 games. Reminds me of Byran Bickell.

  12. Reichel Shalunov Borgstrom could be three top 9 players right there. So the trickle effect has us looking good for 22 and moar for 23 seasons.

    Slayer, yea were going to be deep next yr and better for 23 season exciting finally my allergies has returned to these fuuking fans.

  13. People will need to be moved out of rockford and Chicago to make room, Connolly for one needs to go, after that ?? Regardless of who gets moved or gets signed, feelings will get hurt and players who have earned the right to play will get kicked to the curb for a shiney new prospect. Forget the older russians, why sign them now when for 10nyrs he said no. Plus why pay him an NHL contract without one single NHL game played….PASS on that. The Hawks have enough prospects already and another draft is coming up.

  14. Beer League agree could be some movement that will be questioned, maybe a Kubalik who Colliton seems kinda indifferent to, might go. As far prospects, disagree, can never have too many. Also prospects in the system are all signed to a contract before they play an Nhl game. That said until i see Shalunov, Zhafyarov or even Kayumov in a Blackhawks jersey, hard to believe it happens.

  15. Ian, I am referring to signed prospects, if these russians are signed, where do they play ? I am sure they expect to be in a Hawks sweater, why come here to play in rockford for 70k a year, when the KHL is paying much higher. And if they do sign a 2 way deal ( my guess would be a big fat NO ) and end up in rockford, they will be unhappy campers, either way if they play in rockford or Chicago, players need to be moved and stan likes to dump promising prospects to clear cap space and or make room for the next ” big thing” and or salary. Whick might have to happen to move shaw, dehann, Connolly….etc.

  16. Bring Back Number 40 John Hayden and Give Number 40 to John Hayden For the Buyout Zack Simth and Get a Freshmans Numbers 10 13 14 15 29 4 6 34 36 37 42 Because Number 40 Goes Back To John Hayden and Put Hayden with Shaw and Chicago Blackhawks Minor Trades goes to New York and Pick Up number 72 Artemi Panarin and have Jake Chelios the son of Chirs Chelios join the Blackhawks getting number 7

  17. Not sure I share the excitement about Borgstrom that seems to be permeating throughout the comments. To me he seems like a less accomplished, older version of Strome when the Hawks acquired him. Big and slow (but skilled) and ultimately unable to translate his game to the faster pace of the modern NHL. At 24 he should be close to the player he is going to be and he hasn’t been able to stick yet. What changed other than him being older since the last time he played in the NHL that would make it seem like this time it will work? Not trying to be Donnie Downer here, but legitimately confused about why people think it will work this time. Nothing I have seen or read makes me confident that this guy will be anything other than what he already showed himself to be so far.

  18. Miroslav see Panarin, Kubalik, Suter, Kahun etc. Same scouts saying bring him back that said bring those guys back or in Panarin’s case bring him over for the first time at that age. Like their track record on those type of calls.

  19. Was I banned from Committed Indian for telling the truth that Colliton/Blackhawks have neglected the importance of toughness even to the extent of ordering his players not retaliate or defend themselves.

  20. I couldn’t get through for the past few weeks. Now, I did. I feel better now.

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