After the NHL Trade Deadline passed Monday afternoon, Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman told the press that he was “happy” with the moves made.
The Blackhawks not only stocked up on draft picks, but they also picked up several young players and prospects that they feel have untapped potential.
"We're happy with how it went, not just today but the last week or so...We're trying to rebuild our asset pool. We're trying to bring in young players, it's not only about draft picks."— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) April 12, 2021
–#Blackhawks President of Hockey Ops and GM Stan Bowman on #NHLDeadlineDay
The Blackhawks first trade on Monday was to acquire forward Adam Gaudette from the Canucks for forward Matthew Highmore. Bowman acknowledges that Gaudette is having a down season, but that the Blackhawks organization still sees promise with him.
“Adam is a right-handed center, good sized kid. He’s coming off a good season last year. Hasn’t been as good this year - the numbers haven’t been there - but we certainly see the potential what he brings to the table.”
In the second trade, the Blackhawks received forward Josh Dickinson and the rights to forward Ryder Rolston after sending center Carl Soderberg to the Colorado Avalanche. Dickson, who has spent most of his last three season splitting time between the AHL and and ECHL, was likely acquired for contract limit purposes. The true target of the trade was for Rolston — a center who just completed his freshman season at the University of Notre Dame where 2020 Blackhawks pick Landon Slaggert is his teammate.
When discussing the 19-year old, Bowman again spoke about possibilities that Rolston’s future holds thanks to his talent:
“Very good skater, he brings some size and speed to the game. When you go to watch Notre Dame games, you’ll notice him, because he’s a pretty good-sized kid who really can skate. He had a pretty good year last year in the USHL. Not as much offense this year, but I think there’s more there.”
Bowman’s affection with Notre Dame has been at an all-time lately.
Ryder Rolston is the sixth Notre Dame player to join the #Blackhawks since August. #GoIrish— Brandon Cain (@brandonmcain) April 12, 2021
Aug. 18: Morrison (2016-20)
Oct. 7: Slaggert (Current)
Oct. 13: Morris (2016-20)
Nov. 23: Condra (2005-09)
April 3: Hinostroza (2013-15)
April 12: Rolston (Current)
The final two trades of the day didn’t involve any additional incoming players, but the Blackhawks were able to add more picks for the upcoming draft. The Blackhawks obtained Vegas’ second-round pick in 2021 and third-round in 2022 as well as the Canucks’ fourth-round pick in 2021 in exchange for forward Mattias Janmark, Chicago’s fifth-round draft picks in 2021 and 2022.
The Blackhawks now have eight draft picks in the 2021 NHL Draft and seven in the 2022 NHL Draft.