The Chicago Blackhawks will pick 11th in the 2021 NHL Draft, which begins Friday. The Blackhawks technically have the No. 12 overall selection, but the Coyotes have to forfeit the 11th pick.
It’s already been quite the offseason for Chicago. Duncan Keith is now an Edmonton Oiler after 16 years as the Hawks’ defensive anchor due to a recent trade. Chicago received defenseman Caleb Jones and a conditional draft pick in return.
In other news, we finally have a Jonathan Toews update. Toews missed all of last season with an undisclosed health condition, but is hoping to return for the 2021-22 season.
Toews said in June:
“I think there’s just a lot of things that piled up where my body just fell apart. What they’re calling it is chronic immune response syndrome, where I just couldn’t quite recover and my immune system was just reacting to everything, any kind of stress, anything that I would do throughout the day, it was always that kind of stress response. So it just took some time. That was the really frustrating part, not knowing when or how I was going to get over the hump.”
Toews’ improved health is the most important factor. But, of course, the Blackhawks will welcome one of the greatest players in franchise history back with open arms.
But even with Patrick Kane and Toews (possibly) reunited on the ice, Chicago is still one of the worst teams in the NHL. DraftKings Sportsbook in Illinois has the Hawks at +6,000 to win the 2022 Stanley Cup.
Only seven teams have longer championship odds.
Could some fresh young talent help make things interesting, though? Based on the NHL odds, here are some candidates to be the Blackhawks’ first round pick.
2021 NHL Draft odds
These are some of the players projected to be in the Blackhawks’ draft range at DraftKings:
- William Eklund: Over/under 7.5
- Brandt Clarke: Over/under 8.5
- Kent Johnson: Over/under 9.5
- Chaz Lucius: Over/under 10.5
FanDuel in Illinois does not offer odds on Chicago’s pick, but it has lines on the top overall selection. From there, we can glean who will be in the Blackhawks’ range.
These are the top overall pick odds at FanDuel:
- Owen Power: -2,400
- Matthew Beniers: +1,200
- Simon Edvinsson: +3,100
- Brandt Clarke: +6,000
- Luke Hughes: +6,000
- William Eklund: +6,000
- Mason McTavish: +6,000
- Jesper Wallstedt: +9,500
- Dylan Guenther: +9,500
- Chaz Lucius: +9,500
- Kent Johnson: +9,500
- Fabian Lysell: +9,500
It would seem that anyone with odds +6,000 or greater to be the top pick could be in play for the Blackhawks.
Blackhawks could lose players in expansion draft
There are two NHL Drafts this week — the rookie draft, and the expansion draft.
The expansion draft takes place on Wednesday night. The Seattle Kraken will be making the selections.
These are the players the Blackhawks did not protect, meaning they could wind up on the Kraken:
- Forwards: Ryan Carpenter, Brett Connolly, Josh Dickinson, Adam Gaudette, Vinnie Hinostroza, Brandon Pirri, John Quenneville, Zack Smith
- Defensemen: Calvin de Haan, Anton Lindholm, Nikita Zadorov
- Goaltenders: Collin Delia, Malcolm Subban
2021-22 NHL schedule
On Thursday, the 2021-22 NHL schedule is expected to be released. We already have the Blackhawks’ preseason schedule.
It is as follows:
- Wednesday, Sept. 29: vs. Red Wings, 7:30 p.m.
- Friday, Oct. 1: vs. St. Louis Blues, 7:30 p.m.
- Saturday, Oct. 2: at Blues, 7 p.m.
- Monday, Oct. 4: at Red Wings, 6:30 p.m.
- Thursday, Oct. 7: at Minnesota Wild, 7 p.m.
- Saturday, Oct. 9: vs. Wild, 7:30 p.m.
There is a chance that Sept. 29 will be the first time that Hawks fans can see Toews live since March 11, 2020.
2021 Blackhawks schedule
You can find the complete calendar here; however, here are the Blackhawks game dates through the end of the year:
|Wednesday, Oct. 13||at Colorado Avalanche|
|Friday, Oct. 15||at New Jersey Devils|
|Saturday, Oct. 16||at Pittsburgh Penguins|
|Tuesday, Oct. 19||vs. NY Islanders|
|Thursday, Oct. 21||vs. Vancouver Canucks|
|Sunday, Oct. 24||vs. Detroit Red Wings|
|Wednesday, Oct. 27||vs. Toronto Maple Leafs|
|Friday, Oct. 29||at Carolina Hurricanes|
|Saturday, Oct. 30||at St. Louis Blues|
|Monday, Nov. 1||vs. Ottawa Senators|
|Wednesday, Nov. 3||vs. Carolina Hurricanes|
|Friday, Nov. 5||at Winnipeg Jets|
|Sunday, Nov. 7||vs. Nashville Predators|
|Tuesday, Nov. 9||vs. Pittsburgh Penguins|
|Friday, Nov. 12||vs. Arizona Coyotes|
|Wednesday, Nov. 17||at Seattle Kraken|
|Saturday, Nov. 20||at Edmonton Oilers|
|Sunday, Nov. 21||at Vancouver Canucks|
|Tuesday, Nov. 23||at Calgary Flames|
|Friday, Nov. 26||vs. St. Louis Blues|
|Sunday, Nov. 28||vs. San Jose Sharks|
|Thursday, Dec. 2||at Washington Capitals|
|Saturday, Dec. 4||at NY Rangers|
|Sunday, Dec. 5||at NY Islanders|
|Tuesday, Dec. 7||vs. NY Rangers|
|Thursday, Dec. 9||at Montreal Canadiens|
|Saturday, Dec. 11||at Toronto Maple Leaf|
|Monday, Dec. 13||vs. Calgary Flames|
|Wednesday, Dec. 15||vs. Washington Capitals|
|Friday, Dec. 17||vs. Nashville Predators|
|Saturday, Dec. 18||at Dallas Stars|
|Tuesday, Dec. 21||vs. Florida Panthers|
|Thursday, Dec. 23||at Dallas Stars|
|Tuesday, Dec. 28||at Columbus Blue Jackets|
|Wednesday, Dec. 29||at Winnipeg Jets|
|Saturday, Jan. 1, 2022||at Nashville Predators|