Blackhawks Prospect Roundup: All is Quiet…Too Quiet


All was quiet, throughout the house, not a player was stirring, not even… okay, you get it. The CHL and USHL have both been pretty quiet after this weekend’s action concluded. Despite the break in CHL/USHL action, numerous names were participating in World Juniors camps for their respective countries.

Team Canada’s camp opened with three Blackhawks prospects. Hamilton forward Mackenzie Entwistle, Drummondville defenseman Nicolas Beaudin and college defenseman Ian Mitchell all were selected to the original camp roster. Entwistle and Mitchell have both made Team Canada, but Beaudin was sent home during cuts.

Beaudin made quite the case of himself going into Team Canada’s camp, considering he has been incredible for Drummondville to this point. He has 25 points (5 goals, 20 assists) in 21 games for the Voltigeurs. Nonetheless, Beaudin will have some time off until the QMJHL resumes play on Friday, December 28th.

As for Entwistle, it’s safe to say the knee injury to London Knights forward Alex Formenton surely helped him make the team. However, Entwistle brings a versatile, big bodied forward to Team Canada to aid in their quest for World Junior gold. He has 27 points (15 goals, 12 assists) in 29 games for Hamilton. The young forward also brings on ice leadership as captain of his OHL club.

Other key prospects who will likely be representing their countries at the World Juniors, which begin December 26th, include Adam Boqvist (Sweden) and Philipp Kurashev (Switzerland). Both have been sensational for their junior clubs and deserve to be representing their respective home countries.


Despite a quiet week due to the World Juniors camps, a few Blackhawks prospects excelled for their respective clubs. Noteworthy performances came via Jake Ryczek once again, Alexis Gravel and Josiah Slavin.

Ryczek came off his hottest streak of the season entering play last week and over the weekend. In three games against Cape Breton, Moncton and Charlottetown, all at home, Ryczek registered one goal and one assist. Ryczek now has 19 points in 30 games this season for the Halifax Mooseheads. Halifax, along with the rest of the CHL, will be off until December 28th. The Mooseheads will head to Charlottetown on that day to resume their season.

Gravel has been arguably the most important player thus far for the Mooseheads. Over the three games mentioned above, Gravel went 2-0-1 while shutting-out the Moncton Wildcats, stopping all 33 shots faced. In the win over Charlottetown, Gravel stopped 30 of 32 shots faced. The young goaltender has a season record of 18-6-1 with 2 shutouts. He owns a 2.55 GAA and a .918 save percentage. It’s safe to say Gravel is a big reason for the amount of success the Mooseheads have had this season.

Slavin has cooled a bit recently for the Lincoln Stars. For the season, Slavin has 20 points in 22 games. Over the past weekend of USHL action, Slavin recorded one goal and one assist in three games against Tri-City, Waterloo and Des Moines on December 13th, 14th and 15th, respectively. The USHL is now on the same break as the CHL, so teams will not return to action until December 28th. Slavin and the Stars will visit Tri-City at that time to resume their campaign.


Mikael Hakkarainen has not played for the Muskegon Lumberjacks of the USHL since December 2nd. Rumors from those who closely follow the Lumberjacks say he has not played after taking a puck to the chin and has been held out for precautionary purposes. Look for the Finnish forward to hopefully return to action after the Christmas holiday break and continue his excellent campaign. The young Fin has 23 points (8 goals, 15 assists) in only 14 games to this point. It’s safe to say he has outplayed the USHL level.

Keep yourself in the loop during the World Juniors with The-Rink! Follow myself on Twitter @rnldluce, as well as @lateinthegoldie, for Blackhawks junior and college prospects highlights and information during the tournament.

Leave a Reply