Blackhawks Banter: Reichel’s Fit, Final Four & Stanley Cup Memories


As we close to the conclusion of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs, a silver lining is that the Chicago Blackhawks are subsequently that a lot nearer to a recent begin with the 2021-22 season. With that mentioned, it will be irresponsible to disregard the various non-Blackhawks-related headlines dominating hockey lately, so we’ll proceed to do our half within the meantime.

To not fear, although, as we’re by no means brief on discovering Chicago content material to infuse into the combo. On this week’s episode of Blackhawks Banter, Greg Boysen, Gail Kauchak, and Brooke LoFurno will probably be becoming a member of me to debate and focus on all issues Blackhawks. And I, Shaun Filippelli, will probably be your host for Episode 32.

Take pleasure in this teaser, masking simply a number of the matters we’ll delve into on the total present, and make sure to watch or pay attention the second it drops and is accessible throughout your most popular video or podcast platform. Don’t overlook to become involved and tell us your takes, utilizing #BlackhawksBanter throughout social media so we will make sure to see what you’re saying.

Creating the Proper Match for Reichel’s Debut

Lukas Reichel has been making headlines all through Chicago ever since his first-round choice on the 2020 NHL Entry Draft. He was praised of their preseason scouting report, missed the World Juniors, captured a DEL Championship,  represented Germany on the IIHF Worlds, and has simply signed his entry-level contract with the membership.

2020 first-round #NHLDraft choose Lukas Reichel has signed a 3-year entry-level deal. #Blackhawks

It’s opening evening, he’s within the lineup, and it’s as much as you to set him up for achievement. Which place do you may have him taking part in, who’re his linemates, and what are you anticipating out of his debut efficiency?


My first intuition is to place Reichel between Alex DeBrincat and Patrick Kane, however he’ll probably have to be eased in. Logically, it’s going to make sense to place him on a line with two defensively accountable wingers to take strain off of him.

Younger facilities are inclined to wrestle with out the puck, so making it simpler for him to play protection will result in extra confidence and higher all-around efficiency. As I’ve mentioned earlier than, it’s as much as the top coach to place his gamers in positions to succeed, so we will see.


In Shaun’s latest piece highlighting the Blackhawks gamers on the latest World Championship, he highlighted a quote the place Assistant GM of Participant Growth Mark Eaton described Reichel as “seeing issues quicker and higher than different gamers.” Remind you of somebody?

Yep, Kane and Reichel might develop some nice chemistry collectively. In any case, Kane has a penchant for breaking in new gamers (see Artemi Panarin and DeBrincat), particularly those that see the ice much like how he does. Reichel performs left wing in order that he would match proper in alongside Kane on the best.

Whereas Reichel doesn’t draw back from fishing pucks out of the corners, his defensive sport might use some work. And he most likely wants so as to add some extra weight to compete within the NHL. That is him after supposedly lately including 15 kilos. Yikes!

Certain, Kirby Dach as their heart would be capable of cowl for a few of these deficiencies, however it is likely to be slightly an excessive amount of to ask to place the Reichel on this place straight away. Nonetheless, if I’m the teaching workers, that is one thing I’d be trying out in coaching camp.


My expectations for Reichel aren’t excessive to start out as a result of he will probably be getting acclimated to the NHL and North American ice. However I’m anticipating him to indicate flashes of reliability as a ahead and within the faceoff dot. I’d put him because the third line heart with the road Brandon Hagel-Reichel-Vinnie Hinostroza.


Whereas I feel it’s truthful to anticipate that Reichel ought to flip right into a top-line expertise all through his profession, I wouldn’t need to throw him into that highlight straight away. As a substitute, I’d slot him in on the second or third line in order that he isn’t entrance and heart and may get a really feel for the sport initially.

In fact, he’ll nonetheless be relied upon to provide, however it appears like a safer wager to let him work his method up and carry out in direction of extra taking part in time versus doubtlessly failing amid that kind of strain, leading to a regression to his confidence. I need to construct him up, not break him down.

With that mentioned, regardless of now taking part in each heart and wing, I’d put him again on the left facet and let Dach arrange for the attracts. On the best can be DeBrincat. Whereas they’re all nonetheless on the youthful finish of this roster, DeBrincat’s expertise can compensate for Reichel whereas he and Dach can take attracts interchangeably the place essential.

Their particular person talent units appear to enhance as a lot as they align and Reichel, Dach, and DeBrincat might blossom into fairly a harmful trio for these rebuilding Blackhawks.

Former Blackhawk to Have Greatest Impression

With the Stanley Cup Semifinals now set, now we have the Tampa Bay Lightning battling the New York Islanders and the Vegas Golden Knights matched up in opposition to the Montreal Canadiens. It’s straightforward to imagine every favourite will make it by, however, as we’ve seen, that’s not at all times the way in which issues pan out.

With that mentioned, each remaining group has some kind of Blackhawks connection all through their roster. Which former-Hawk do you anticipate to be the largest difference-maker for his or her group this spherical?


I feel the ex-Blackhawk that may be the largest difference-maker within the semifinal spherical is Phillip Danault. If the Canadiens are to have any probability to upset the Golden Knights, they want Carey Value to face on his head, they usually should discover a strategy to decelerate Vegas’ offense.

Phillip Danault, Montreal Canadiens
Phillip Danault, Montreal Canadiens (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Danault will lead the cost defensively and can match up in opposition to their prime line. If he can do what he does finest, then Montreal might need an opportunity.


If the Canadiens are going to have any probability in opposition to the Golden Knights, Danault must proceed to close down the opponent’s prime gamers. He’s accomplished a wonderful job of this within the first two rounds in opposition to the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Winnipeg Jets. However the Golden Knights are an entire completely different animal; they’re a really deep group. Whereas he’s at it, Danault ought to most likely choose up his manufacturing a bit. He’s solely recorded two assists in 11 playoff video games.

Do I feel Danault and firm can usurp the Vegas powerhouse? Most likely not, however I positive want to see the Habs put up a very good combat. Who is aware of, possibly we’ll even see just a few extra power-play objectives from our outdated pal Erik Gustafsson.


Nick Leddy as a result of he’s a veteran that has the expertise and is aware of what it takes to win the Stanley Cup. That type of expertise is so helpful to a group making an attempt to win a championship, so I feel he may have a giant and optimistic influence for the Islanders within the semifinals.


Recency bias apart, having seen him traded away from the Blackhawks just some months in the past, I’m nonetheless drawn to what Mattias Janmark is able to. Not solely does he have Stanley Cup Closing expertise, having been there final 12 months with the Dallas Stars, however he’s now a part of one of many deepest groups that stay as he picks up third-line minutes in Vegas.

Mattias Janmark, Vegas Golden Knights
Mattias Janmark, Vegas Golden Knights (Picture by David Becker/NHLI)

His postseason manufacturing has been unfold out so far, with seven factors by 10 contests in 2021. Nonetheless, his three objectives all got here on the identical evening. That mentioned, whereas it’s an unsustainable tempo to anticipate, Janmark is at present scoring on 27.3 % of his photographs. Clearly, he’s harmful with the puck.

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Add in the truth that he’ll go up in opposition to Montreal’s bottom-six more often than not, and he might simply begin the best kind of streak on any given evening. Whereas the Canadiens give attention to shutting down gamers like Mark Stone, Jonathan Marchessault, Max Pacioretty, and William Karlsson, Janmark might swoop in and capitalize whereas their guard is down.

Stanley Cup Celebration You Loved the Most

June will probably be stuffed with reminders of Stanley Cup winners from years previous, as they have a good time their respective anniversaries of after they hoisted that 12 months’s trophy. Included inside that reminiscing are the 2010, 2013, and 2015 Blackhawks. It was a particular decade that offered quite a lot of alternatives for followers to have a good time.

Wanting again on their three Cups in that six-year span, which was your favorite to have a good time on a private stage? Give us the 12 months and a artistic title to encapsulate that reminiscence, however save the reason for the present.


2015: It All Comes Full Circle


2013: 17 Seconds


2015: Overcoming Pesky Preds


2010: Kissing the Cup

Hopefully, you’ve loved this sneak peek of what we’ll dive into on the subsequent Blackhawks Banter. You’ll want to subscribe to our YouTube Channel, like our Fb Web page, and observe us on Twitter, so that you catch each new episode the second they drop. It’s also possible to now hearken to our present in podcast type in your most popular platform.

Miss final week’s debate? Get caught up, under.


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