The Battle Between Chicago Blackhawks Depth Forwards Tightens In Camp

Published September 29, 2023 at 2:34 PM

This season, depth forwards who were consistently on the 2022-2023 roster will have to adjust to the new norm.

To stay relevant, the players will have to adapt their game as well, as the roster is being changed to improve it.

Entwistle, Katchouk, Anderson, Blackwell and Johnson all spent last year on the Blackhawks' NHL roster.

Now, they're competing for just one spot. Most will wind up waivers, then Rockford. It's a tough reality.

"Hopefully [I can] stay here."

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On last season's team, Mackenzie Entwistle, Boris Katchouk, Colin Blackwell(*injured), Reese Johnson, and Joey Anderson have not been included in any of the four forward lines in training camp.

«It's hockey,» Entwistle said. «The decision is in my control but, at the same time, out of my control. We'll see what happens. If I go down to Rockford, then I go down to Rockford. I'll compete and do whatever I can to get back up here.»

Said Johnson: «Every day, there's a chance to prove yourself. I remind myself every day that playing in the NHL is a privilege, and I never get complacent with myself.»

As the competition tightens, they are now fighting for a roster spot as they all played significant time on the NHL roster last season.

There seems to be a battle for spots between the new guys and veterans with Taylor Hall, Corey Perry, and Nick Foligno joining the team. However, if they can't beat out forwards like Ryan Donato, Cole Guttman, Jason Dickinson, and Tyler Johnson for a spot, they may be demotion-bound.

«We're all buddies,» Anderson said. «It is a job, but...we want to see each other succeed along with ourselves. You push each other to play hard and be better. [Management is] going to make the decision they're going to make.»

The forwards have been working on the "fifth line" and have been putting on a show, forechecking, and trying to impress the team while maintaining a positive attitude.

Everyone knows management is going to make the decisions they're going to make, and they all want to see others succeed. But they will do everything in their power to make it difficult for Luke Richardson to make a decision.
September 29   |   86 answers
The Battle Between Chicago Blackhawks Depth Forwards Tightens In Camp

Do you think Katchouk, Anderson or Entwistle make it on the NHL roster?

Yes4754.7 %
No3945.3 %
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