Chicago Blackhawks Issue Stern Punishment to Rookie Forward

January 21, 2024  (1:39 PM)

Connor Bedard and Lukas Reichel
Photo credit: NHL

Former first round pick in the 2020 draft, Lukas Reichel, has been scratched once again. While he is playing well defensively, he has been nonexistent when it comes to the offensive side of the puck.

This isn't the first time he has been scratched this season, as the December 3rd game at the Minnesota Wild, he was viewing the loss from the press box. Reichel said that him being healthy scratched was a "wake up call" for him, but even after that, his offensive struggles continued. This may be more than a one-game thing, though, as Nick Foligno is returning from a broken hand and Ryan Donato is returning from illness. He'll have to earn his spot back.
Reichel is 8th when it comes to shots on goal on a dreadful hockey team, at only 60. Lukas hasn't tallied a shot on goal in the past three games and didn't even tally a shot attempt in the overtime period on Friday against the New York Islanders. Some of the main points are that he tries to do too much. He either holds on to the puck too long then loses it or tries to dance by four people at once. Unfortunately for Lukas, he seemed to have become the odd man out at practice.
A stint with the Rockford Icehogs may be the next window for Lukas Reichel. Hopefully, he builds some confidence down there, even though it will be killer at first. He'll be a shining star down there and bring some life to a struggling Rockford time. Or, the coaching staff will take the approach that less hockey is more hockey, like they did with goaltender Arvid Soderblom. Soderblom took a couple weeks off at best and worked with goalie coach Jimmy Waite. It seemed to have worked out for him, maybe it'll work for Reichs.
These are what the lines look like without him and fellow linemate Cole Guttman:
Luke Richardson stated that assistant coach, Derrick King, has sat him down and showed him his play from last season, where he had seven goals and eight assists in 23 games.
Even though he is struggling, and his confidence is at an all-time low, but it is way too early to call him a bust. Lukas can be a top winger on this team, and this may be one of those sophomore slumps. Sure, he's been a huge disappointment when expectations were so high for him. But there is also no rush to get him going. Take your time with him, he's only 21 years old.
JANUARY 21   |   428 ANSWERS
Chicago Blackhawks Issue Stern Punishment to Rookie Forward

What should the Blackhawks do with this rookie?

Trade12328.7 %
Send down19345.1 %
Continue scratching11226.2 %
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