Blackhawks

Myers: Blackhawks set first preseason lineup

368117.jpg

Myers: Blackhawks set first preseason lineup

Monday, Sept. 19, 2011
Posted: 5:22 p.m. Updated: 5:26 p.m.

By Tracey Myers
CSNChicago.com Blackhawks InsiderFollow @TraMyersCSN
Brothers Jonathan and David Toews will be teammates and Ray Emery and Alex Salak will split time in goal when the Chicago Blackhawks open their preseason schedule against the Edmonton Oilers Tuesday night in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Other forwards scheduled to play Tuesday are Viktor Stalberg, Rostislav Olesz, Marcus Kruger, Ben Smith, Brandon Saad, Mark McNeill, Jamal Mayers, Kyle Beach, Jimmy Hayes and Phillip Danault.

The Blackhawks will also send seven defensemen: Steve Montador, Nick Leddy, John Scott, Sami Lepisto, Ryan Stanton, Brian Fahey and Joe Lavin.

Well have a young lineup tomorrow, coach Joel Quenneville said Monday. Itll be nice to see these guys play in an NHL game.

Game time is 8 p.m. CST and will be streamed live on chicagoblackhawks.com in the Chicago area.

Bolland messing with Toews

Dave Bolland was back to being a pest on Monday, aggravating Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews in their afternoon scrimmage. Bolland hooked Toews a few times during the second half of their scrimmage.

He caught my hand pretty good off the draw and he kept messing with me, so I gave him a whack, Toews said.

Bolland said he was having some fun.

I think we all know how Tazer is so its always fun playing around with him, he said. Everyones getting ready for the real games now against some other teams.

Olesz shines

Rostislav Olesz had two good scrimmages on Monday, lined up mainly with Andrew Brunette and Toews. Olesz had a goal and two assists in the two games.

He had his best day today, Quenneville said. He was more comfortable, had good pace.

Toews agreed.

Hes a solid skater, has good hands and hes one of those strong, skilled European players who doesnt have too many holes in his game, he said. He can play on the power play and PK, play defensively, too, because hes strong and quick. Its not difficult to play with him.

Roster trimmed

The Blackhawks assigned forwards Mirko Hoefflin and Ludvig Rensfeldt, as well as goaltenders Mac Carruth, Johan Mattsson and Kent Simpson to their respective junior clubs on Monday afternoon.

The team roster now stands at 54 active players.

Tracey Myers is CSNChicago.com's Blackhawks Insider. Follow Tracey on Twitter @TramyersCSN for up-to-the-minute Hawks information

NHL Draft Profile: D Quinn Hughes

NHL Draft Profile: D Quinn Hughes

From June 17-21, Charlie Roumeliotis will profile two prospects per day — 10 total (five forwards, five defensemen) — leading up to the NHL Draft.​

Quinn Hughes

Position: Defenseman
Height: 5-foot-10
Weight: 170 pounds
Shoots: Left

Scouting report:

"He's got the puck skills, is a good skater, and is a guy with some high-end offensive talent. He wants to get right in there and play where it's hard and where you get rewarded. When he gets that puck on his stick, he wants to bury it."

NHL player comparable: Torey Krug/Kris Letang

Fit for Blackhawks:

It's no secret the Blackhawks are looking to restock their pipeline with some high-end defensemen. Henri Jokiharju and Ian Mitchell are on the way. But the former isn't a lock to be a full-time NHLer this season and the latter will continue playing in college for the 2018-19 season.

Hughes, who shined at Michigan and the IIHF World Championship with Team USA, would have the best chance of the three to crack the Blackhawks lineup first. The problem is, he likely won't be available at No. 8, so if Hughes is the guy they're locked in on, they'd need to trade up to grab him. 

If they did that, Hughes would give the Blackhawks a third blue line prospect they can get excited about. He's a left-handed shot, which evens out the balance in the system, and he would become a prime candidate to eventually replace Duncan Keith as the team's No. 1 defenseman.

NHL Draft Profile: F Oliver Wahlstrom

NHL Draft Profile: F Oliver Wahlstrom

From June 17-21, Charlie Roumeliotis will profile two prospects per day — 10 total (five forwards, five defensemen) — leading up to the NHL Draft.​

Oliver Wahlstrom

Position: Right wing
Height: 6-foot-1
Weight: 205 pounds
Shoots: Right

Scouting report:

"Wahlstrom already has an NHL-caliber shot with a quick release and the ability to create space for himself and linemates. He's most known for his goal-scoring ability and elite shot, and can hit a one-timer as good or better than many professional players."

NHL player comparable: Phil Kessel

Fit for Blackhawks:

The Blackhawks would probably prefer to take a defenseman at No. 8, but because four of them might go inside the Top 7, the best available player on the board is likely to be a forward. And there's a decent chance that could be Wahlstrom.

Wahlstrom would immediately become Chicago's top prospect, and a player that has the potential to slide into the top six when he reaches the NHL — whenever that may be.

He's committed to college for the 2018-19 season, so it's doubtful he would join the team until at least 2019-20, but Blackhawks vice president of amateur scouting Mark Kelley said in our draft preview edition of the Hawks Talk Podcast that it wouldn't deter them from picking him. 

And it shouldn't, because you don't want to waste a player of his caliber's entry-level years developing in the minors if he's not ready yet.

"I think the way we would evaluate it is, we project them, we try to get a timeline on when we think they might be NHL ready," Kelley said. "But we're also looking for where they are in their development curve and want their ceiling is. I think in some players, you have to be a little bit more patient for them to reach their ceiling. That doesn't necessarily mean that players can't exceed their development curve, I think we saw that with Alex DeBrincat last year."