What’s ahead for the Blackhawks in the second half of the season?
CHICAGO – What will some Blackhawks’ fans think of the first half of the 2022-2023 season, one where the team currently sits at the bottom of the NHL?
“Things are going exactly as planned.”
If you’ve watched the team over the last year and the moves they’ve made, that statement is true.
General manager Kyle Davidson announced the team was rebuilding last March and followed through with his roster moves. Trading Alex DeBrincat and Kirby Dach for first round picks, bringing in veterans on short-term deals along with playing a healthy amount of young players figured to equal a low finish in the standings.
That would ensure that the team would secure a high draft pick, specifically the No. 1 overall selection, allowing them to take center Connor Bedard, who is universally considered the best prospect in 2023.
Of course, there’s no guarantee they’d get the selection even if they finish last in the league thanks to the lottery, but it would give the Blackhawks the best odds. That’s the case at the moment as the team’s 26 points are the lowest of the 32 NHL teams, two less than the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Now comes the second half of the Blackhawks season, where the focus is going to turn toward two faces of the franchise who may be entering their final days in Chicago. Since Davidson still desires more prospects along with draft capital, Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews could very well be traded before the March 3 deadline as their contracts are set to expire.
It could make for a month-and-a-half goodbye to a pair of players who helped the team to three Stanley Cup titles in the 2010s. In the meantime, head coach Luke Richardson will be looking to develop some of the young talent in the organization as he continues to set the tone for the team on and off the ice in his first season.
This second half of the season begins at the United Center on Tuesday against the Sabres at 7:30 p.m. at the United Center, and Greg Boysen will be there covering it for CHGO.
Before that, the reporter joined WGN News Now’s “9 Good Minutes” on Tuesday to talk about the Blackhawks’ season to date and what to look for in the second half of the season.
You can watch his full interview with Larry Hawley in the video above.
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