Draft Wrap: It Smells Better Around Here

Pretty glorious day, no?

Sure, we’re making too much of a deal of barely a fourth-liner (or barely an NHL-er). But at least we now know that Stan sees what all of us sees, or saw. And Stan is at least making attempts to re-jigger this team how he sees fit, with more speed and skill (thus the pumping and re-signing of Morin). And the fact that some team was dumb enough to give up not just a draft pick, but a 3rd rounder which could be somewhat valuable, I nearly plotzed! Watch what a difference actually having a 4th line could make next spring.

As for the picks today, well, who knows if any of these guys will come up for air. But we’ll do what we can to see what the Hawks have picked up.

Matheson Iacopelli (RW) - Lit up the USHL this year with 45 goals. Big kid, at 6-2 though he’ll have to fill in that 172 pound frame. Off to Western Michigan in the fall where he’ll be coached by former NHL coach Andy Murray. From SBNCollegeHockey.com:

Iacopelli has very soft hands and tremendous scoring touch for a player his size. He’s got great offensive instincts, an above average shot, and isn’t afraid to use his size to gain position and win pucks in front of the net. Forty goals in the USHL is an impressive number that is rarely reached.

On the downside, Iacopelli is an average skater at best, and while he does play a physical game, isn’t as strong on the defensive end.

Beau Starrett (LW) - Played in the USHL as well and another big kid at 6-4, 180. From DraftSite.com:

Intriguing prospect from a hockey family with great height and attractive potential. Has the size but will remain a longer term prospect until he gets better coordinated and more muscle on his long skinny frame. There is lots to like and wait for. He has put points on the board, and plays a tenacious forechecking role. Strong on the puck. He has decent hands and a nice hard shot. Is a very good skater and once he puts muscle on, he may be a player. He is a future shutdown centre with toughness. 

Fredrik Olofsson - Hawks were apparently intent on size up front, as this is another one over six feet tall. Good enough to be on the Swedish team for the U-18 Ivan Helinka tournament. He’ll be off to Colorado College in the fall.

Luc Snuggerud - First d-man the Hawks took, and he’s from Eden Prairie, MN so I guess he’ll just flatter to deceive as other blue-liners from that area have, right? Kinda small for a d-man at only 5-11. Real offensive upside, and he won the top d-man award in Minnesota high school hockey, which isn’t nothing. He’s off to wear those awesome Nebraska-Omaha jerseys next year.

Andreas Soderberg - Opposite of Snuggerud, as this is a big d-man at 6-4 who is probably more the stay at home type. He’ll stay in Europe.

From there the Hawks actually took a Russian in goalie Ivan Nalimov and a couple longer-term projects in Dylan Sikura and right wing Jack Ramsey.

Surprising the Hawks didn’t unload Johnny Oduya for picks, as they really have to open up cap space, The Bollig trade gets them barely under the cap for this year, and we’ve seen how having no flexibility under the cap during the season can work out. Maybe they’ll do it this week for future picks when a team misses out on the free agent d-man they really want. Maybe they’ll wait until the entire market shakes out. But the Hawks still have to clear space to have wiggle room during the season for whatever might arise. Stay tuned, this week only just started as to how the Hawks will remake themselves for next season.

  • Jeff Lebowski
    • Stockroom Snail

      McGrattan is a metaphor for life and Bollig is Bollig.

      • Rene Rabiela

        Oh the Irony

    • Jim

      Looked like the refs were kinda enjoying the beating for a while.

    • HossasPierogi

      Even in short career, never has anyone received the benefit of more doubt.

  • TitanTransistor

    Call me crazy, I wouldn’t be shocked if it’s Leddy that gets moved rather than Oduya. Q has not given any indication that he trusts Leddy enough to put him in a 2nd pair role, and there are a ton of prospects beating down the door for time on the big club.

    • jordyhawk

      Agree and at 2.7 per year he isn’t exactly cheap as #5. There was also the rumored bad blood between his agent and Stan at contract time last year. I have wondered all along if the possibility of Leddy not panning out was one of the reasons Stan got Runblad.

  • Bob Lanz

    great day just to rid of the anchor bollg. Looking forward to a quick hardworking 4th line that can score and possess the puck in the O zone

  • The Other One

    I like that you use draftsite.com. Thats Bill Placzyck (or something like that). Knows his stuff. And he’s a regular poster in the comments on Jaeckels HB blog (known as the wiz). Yes, the world is small

    • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

      Is that the guy that does a 7-round mock draft? After about 30/40 players you could start using names from the NFL draft and it wouldn’t be any less realistic.

  • HawksRule

    Bowman never even drafted a single Canadian in the 2013 draft! Only team with that dubious honor. His first three picks this time were Americans. I don’t have anything against American hockey players, but Bowman has to pick some more Canadians. The Blackhawks first pick from 2010 (American Kevin Hayes), stayed in college and has not yet signed with the hawks. Hayes becomes an unrestricted free agent on August 15 if the Hawks don’t sign him. As a result Bowman wasted a first round pick, or will be signing him for too much. This is an additional risk in selecting college players. I did not like what Bowman did with Pirri.

    In the 2014 draft Bowman selected 5 Americans (including his first three), 2 Swedes, 1 Canadian, and 1 Russian. (Bowman doesn’t tend to pick many Russians either). The Russians have a higher probability of going to the KHL.

    The lack of Canadians is surprising, especially given the overall percentage of Canadians being taken. It almost seems like he is against Canadians. it makes no sense given that Bowman himself is really a Canadian.

    • guesthouse

      Whoa.

    • whiteystapleton

      From Puck Daddy:

      Loser: Canada

      The inventors of hockey (well, maybe) saw their numbers slip from 96 players in 2013 to 77 players taken in 2014. Some of this was due to an increase in American-born players being selected, as 67 U.S.-born players were taken, representing its highest percentage (32%) of total selections ever. But most of the Canada decline was due to the dive in QMJHL players, as 17 were taken in 2014 after 31 were selected in 2013.

      Not a heavy draft year for Canadians. Agree if Hayes is not signed it is a waste.

    • shinkicker

      Because Cam Barker, Kyle Beach and Dylan Olsen were such useful first round draft choices, even though they’ve probably all got a maple leaf branded on their asses. And you’ve conveniently left out 2011 when StanBo selected two Canadians in the first round.

      • ToucanStubbs

        Yea this guy has some perspective issues. Being Canadian has nothing to do with how good a player is. If you can play, thats good enough. We aren’t drafting for need, we’re drafting for best skill available. Maybe to a struggling team, that risk MIGHT come into play but only in later rounds and only if they really need guys who will definitely pan out.

      • HawksRule

        Olsen is American. Barker and Beach were selected before Bowman became GM. The statement about Olsen, Barker, and Beach is nonsense. Many draft picks don’t amount to anything … I never stated that Canadians (or any group) are a sure thing.
        The Hawks have drafted a lot of great Canadians prior to Bowman (Toews, Keith, Seabrook, Larmer, Savard, Darryl Sutter, Troy Murray, Doug Wilson), but that too does not mean much.
        I did not conveniently leave out 2011. I did not post after the 2013 draft since it was only one season and might have been an outlier. Even this might be an outlier. However, there is the possibility that the Hawks are more (too?) focused on the US? This year, like every year, had Canada as the country with the most folks drafted. Canada has won the Olympic Gold the past two times (and could easily dress two very competitive teams for the Olympics if it was allowed). Not drafting (m)any Canadians is not a winning move in the long run. However, again, it might just be a coincidence.

        • HawksRule

          Also, real shame that Bowman did not trade Kevin Hayes a couple of years ago (or did not draft him at all). Perhaps with Bollig being traded, Hayes might sign, but it is looking more and more that Hayes will be a mercenary and wait until he is an UFA. He probably didn’t like what he saw with Pirri, J. Hayes, and Olsen never getting chances, and Morin not even dressing in the playoffs after doing so well in the final stretch. Bowman probably wasted a first round pick.

  • HawksRule

    An interesting pick made was by the Islanders late in the first round.
    Joshua Ho-Sang seems to have a ton of talent and his favourite players are
    Patrick Kane and PK Subban. He had played some hockey with Steve Larmer’s
    son and watched videos of Denis Savard.

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=716887

    Folks say that he has an attitude, but he does not have any problems with the law,
    and seems very intelligent.

    • shinkicker

      It’s funny how he has attitude problems, but the guy who was suspended twice by his own junior team for hurling slurs at people (including his own teammates?) has overcome adversity.

      • ToucanStubbs

        I think they said he missed 20 games from suspensions this season for slurs against refs, opposing teams, and even team mates. I can’t believe DeAngelo isn’t the bad attitude story. I’d have serious concerns if a kid good enough to put up 70pts in 50 games (from the blue line I might add) has a mouth bad enough to get benched. But nope..

        • YoAdrienne

          It’s the slurring of his teammates that gets me. Why would anyone want someone like that on their team? I don’t care how good he is.

    • HawksRule

      Hawks should hire Steve Larmer as a scout.

      • Stockroom Snail

        Or hire him to stud.

  • HossasPierogi

    While I join others in my glee in Bollig moving on, I must ask: if they can see his dubious value now, why couldn’t they see it six weeks ago when it really counted? With Zus and Bollig (Q’s faves) the first two players to be launched, it once again begs the question of whether or not Stan and Q are on the same page.

    • Joe Banks

      I’ll never get over the fact Q dressed Bollig and Versteeg for game 7.

    • Stockroom Snail

      If they are quibbling over the bottom of the roster, they are doing their jobs.

    • ToucanStubbs

      Personally, I dont think Bollig went because they suddenly realized anything. I think he went because there is nothing serious on the table with Sharp or Oduya, at least as of yet, so they went to pull what money they could off the cap hit just to get a little more wiggle room they know is needed later. I believe, if the cap went higher like expected, Bollig will still be on the team and still play every game.

      • YoAdrienne

        I agree. With regards to Bollig, they got a chance to shed some salary and get a prospect in return, so they jumped on it. They got rid of what was probably their most expendable player. As for Zus, even he knew he wasn’t coming back. He’s 37. Most guys retire at that age. He wasn’t “Q’s fave”. He was the best guy Q had to work with under the circumstances.

  • Joe Banks

    CSN Chicago reporting Hawks interested in Martin Brodeur?
    - How is Khabby’s shoulder?

    • raditzzzz

      you mean, hows khabby’s groinshoulderbackheadleg?

      answer: done

  • jacquescloutier

    barely under the cap, but with a roster of only 21 [twelve forwards]. not sure if that’s typical. so yeah, i really think someone has to go, even before you get into flexibility.

    • Guest

      FORWARDS
      Patrick Sharp
      ($5.900m)
      /
      Jonathan Toews
      ($6.300m)
      /
      Kris Versteeg
      ($2.200m)

      Brandon Saad
      ($0.764m)
      /
      Andrew Shaw
      ($2.000m)
      /
      Patrick Kane
      ($6.300m)

      Bryan Bickell
      ($4.000m)
      /
      Teuvo Teravainen
      ($0.894m)
      /
      Marian Hossa
      ($5.275m)

      Jeremy Morin
      ($0.800m)
      /
      Marcus Kruger
      ($1.325m)
      /
      Ben Smith
      ($1.500m)

      DEFENSEMEN
      Brent Seabrook
      ($5.800m)
      /
      Duncan Keith
      ($5.538m)

      Niklas Hjalmarsson
      ($4.100m)
      /
      Johnny Oduya
      ($3.375m)

      Nick Leddy
      ($2.700m)
      /
      Michal Rozsival
      ($2.200m)

      David Rundblad
      ($0.785m)
      /

      GOALTENDERS
      Corey Crawford
      ($6.000m)

      Antti Raanta
      ($0.750m)

      ——
      SALARY CAP: $69,000,000; CAP PAYROLL: $68,506,795; BONUSES: $630,000
      CAP SPACE (21-man roster): $493,205

  • BestPredsForward

    I don’t think we’re out of the woods just yet…

    https://twitter.com/NHLBlackhawks/status/482943185422143488

    • Stockroom Snail

      Sigh. Q needs his caveman.

      • Bannerman

        He always will too but is it really that bad? When he replaced Scott, Bollig played sparingly and hardly at all in the playoffs. Last year he played useful minutes until he signed the extension. No need to discuss what he “did” in the playoffs. Mashinter, being a young guy will have to earn PT. To do that, he’ll have to be able to play defense. I don’t see him playing 82 games unless he shows can do more than punch faces.

        I agree with Chico on this point: if we’re going to have a guy like Mashinter and he plays like 40 games a year that’s fine so long as he’s not skating 2 minutes in a playoff game.

        • Stockroom Snail

          It is bad when it handicaps you from putting your best line combinations forward and you have to overplay your top players (hmmm, like a recent post season I recall).

          It’s okay to have a player like Bollig (BYEig) as part of a rotation, but he played 82 games last year and blocked useful players from dressing (not literally, but you get the point).

    • Joe Banks

      Bantha Pudu, heh heh heh…

  • wowwowweewoo

    I really can’t decide what happened under the surface of the Bollig trade. On one hand I feel like this is Bowman taking control of the line-up. Is this because of issues with Q? Maybe the $$-dollars being talked about with Toews & Kane made him realize this is the last year with this whole group before a forced purge to sign the big two – leading him to go all-in this year? On the other side, maybe Burke called him and said he wanted Bollig and Stan just simply said “what are you offering?”. We’ll never know, but I think it’s one of the more intriguing things that could have happened (the only thing more “intriguing” probably would have been downright stupid)

    • Lobster

      The Calgary GM (Treliving) said they had been talking about the deal for a few weeks. I don’t know why Stan changed his mind, maybe it was Bollig’s playoff role, but I think Q is on board with this as welll. Q was also talking up Morin and saying he would be a regular in the lineup, and Bollig’s role diminished in the playoffs under Q.

      • YoAdrienne

        I suspect he changed his mind based on finding out at the last minute that the cap was not going to be has high as was expected. That’s $1.25 million less to worry about.

    • ballyb11

      Q hates Bowman.

      Bowman hates Q.

  • HawksRuke

    Great that the Hawks unloaded Bollig! Bowman had overpaid Bollig.
    Bowman also overpaid Crawford. 4.5 million and the Crow would have signed and been happy. None of the other teams would have paid Crawford $6 million.
    Hopefully no stupidity like last off-season when signing Khabibulan!
    Hawks have a good back-up and do not need sign or trade for one.