The Chicago Blackhawks are among NHL teams “believed to be interested” in Czech forward David Kampf, reports Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman. The Colorado Avalanche and Vegas Golden Knights are also listed as suitors for Kampf, who is available as an undrafted free agent.
Europe has repeatedly been a source of talent for the Blackhawks over the past few years, with Artemi Panarin being the prime example of the team uncovering talent overseas. Michal Kempny was also signed out of the KHL, and European signings Erik Gustafsson, Lars Johansson, and Martin Lundberg are providing depth in Rockford.
Kampf, 22, is probably more Lundberg than Panarin, but with several NHL teams possibly interested in him, he’s worth taking a look at. The forward has played the past two seasons for Piráti Chomutov of Czech Extraliga, the top league in the country, and also logged minutes for the Czech junior national teams.
This season with Piráti Chomutov, Kampf recorded 15 goals and 16 assists in 52 games. That’s not great, but it’s a big improvement from the year before, when he put up just nine goals and four assists in 42 games. Kampf was more productive with the Czech U-20 team, posting 36 points in 35 games.
Back in 2014, the NHL Central Scouting Services ranked Kampf No. 36 among all international skaters in that year’s draft class. That’s five spots ahead of Joni Tuulola, who eventually got picked by the Blackhawks in the sixth round of the 2015 draft, and 11 spots behind Gustav Forsling.
So Kampf wasn’t a bad prospect in the draft, he just slipped through the cracks, which could be make him an interesting flier for the Hawks. He’s got size (6’2, 192 pounds), and showed improvement in his second year of top Czech hockey. At the very least, you figure he’d be good depth to have in Rockford.