Hi-ho, Hi-ho: Day 1 of Blackhawks Prospect Camp

Goaltender Brandon Whitney looks around traffic caused by Stephen Johns [in front] and another prospect during drills in camp today. (Photo Credit:  Kim Wrona)

Goaltender Brandon Whitney looks around traffic caused by Stephen Johns [in front] and another prospect during a drill in camp today. (Photo Credit: Kim Wrona)

Monday afternoon brought the first day of Blackhawks Prospect Camp, which lasts until the end of the week. Even though the guys were just practicing, there were still chances for them to shine.

The noon start time of practice brought the first group of prospects to the ice:  the Free Agent Invitees. They participated in passing, skating, puck-handling and battle drills, among other things. Three defensemen stood out the most from this group:  Dan Weissenhofer, Jake Chelios and Nolan Zajac. Weissenhofer was hitting just about everything that moved when he was able to and he was making the effort to block shots—and it wasn’t even the scrimmaging part of camp yet! Chelios’ confidence and swagger was evident in his smooth skating, calm demeanor and good defensive play. Zajac displayed his speed for everyone to see.

Here is how the Free Agents were split up:

White Jerseys

Forwards

Cohen Adair – Northern Michigan

Tim O’Brien – Dartmouth (hometown is Winnetka)

Jason Bast – St. Francis Xavier

Quinn Gould – Merrimack

Matt Lorito – Brown

Defensemen

Dan Weissenhofer – Air Force (hometown is Naperville)

Guy LeBoeuf – RPI

Luke Curadi – RPI

Red Jerseys

Forwards

Dario Simion – Lugano HC

Garrett Thompson – Ferris State

Chris McCarthy – Vermont

Grayson Downing – New Hampshire

Milos Bubela – RPI

Sam Babintsev – Mississauga

Defensemen

Jake Chelios – Michigan State

Nolan Zajac – Denver

Zach Loesch – Lake Superior State

Gleb Koryagin – HC MVD Jr.

Goalies

Matthew O’Connor – Boston University

Jackson Whistle – Kelowna

After the Free Agents left the ice, the Blackhawks prospects that were either drafted or signed by the club came onto the ice. Many players who have been in the system and have attended camp for the past few years were their normal, consistent selves:  Phillip Danault, Mark McNeill, Sam Jardine, Garret Ross, Alex Broadhurst, etc. While Stephen Johns has been in the Prospect Camp line-up in previous years, this was his first time back since 2011. He was very noticeable on the ice, whether it was from a physical standpoint, a skating standpoint or a passing standpoint. John Hayden, whom the Blackhawks drafted in the 3rd round in this year’s draft, was noticeable as well. He seems to have a nice set of hands on him as he seemed to always be putting the puck into the back of the net. He also has good size:  he stands at 6-foot-3 and is 210 pounds. Michael Paliotta, much like Johns, was solid all day and even showed off his physical presence at times during battle drills. Kent Simpson appeared to be the best goalie at camp today, but that’s not a shock considering he has the most professional experience out of all of the netminders there.

Here’s how the group was split:

White Jerseys

Forwards

Phillip Danault – Moncton

Mark McNeill – Prince Albert

Garret Ross — Saginaw

Defensemen

Stephen Johns – Notre Dame

Robin Norell – Djurgarden Jr. 18

Robin Press – Sodertalje Jr. 20

Carl Dahlstrom – Linkoping Jr. 18

Viktor Svedberg – Vastra Frolunda HC

Red Jerseys

Forwards

Alex Broadhurst – London

John Hayden – US NTDP

Pat Mullane – Boston College

Chris Calnan – South Shore

Tyler Motte – US NTDP

Anthony Louis – US NTDP

Defensemen

Dillon Fournier – Rouyn-Noranda

Travis Brown – Moose Jaw

Justin Holl – University of Minnesota

Michael Paliotta – Vermont

Nick Mattson – North Dakota

Sam Jardine – Ohio State

Goalies

Kent Simpson – Toledo

Mac Carruth – Portland

Brandon Whitney – Victoriaville

Matt Tomkins – Sherwood Park

Kevin Hayes wasn’t at camp today, but apparently he’s on his way for tomorrow.

7-8-13 004-Kevin

Antti Raanta didn’t see any ice time today because he has a minor injury.

7-8-13 003-Raanta

Ryan Hartman was off the ice as well as he continues to recover from shoulder surgery.

7-8-13 002-Ryan

Luke Johnson, Vincent Hinostroza, Maxim Shalunov and Kirill Gotovets all were not present on the ice at camp as well.

The bb Blackhawks will be back on the ice at Johnny’s Ice House tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. For updates from camp, follow me on Twitter:  @kimwrona7. /shameless plug.

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One thought on “Hi-ho, Hi-ho: Day 1 of Blackhawks Prospect Camp

  1. Pingback: Blackhawks prospects show promise | Cups & Pucks

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