The Blackhawks continue their whirlwind of a day and acquire the 25th overall pick in this years draft and goaltender Petr Mrazek from the Maple Leafs in exchange for the 38th overall pick. Chicago is able to reap the benefits of a salary dump Toronto had been attempting to make.
— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) July 8, 2022
Mrazek is a journeyman goaltender that finds himself on his 5th team overall. He comes with a yearly salary of $3.8 million that will expire at the end of the 2024 season.
To put it simply, Mrazek’s numbers last year were bad. He posted a goals against average of 3.34 and save percentage of 0.888 over the course of 20 games. He had an injury riddled season which went in line with his injury riddled career.
This is a salary dump trade that the Blackhawks welcomed due to the amount of cap space they have this year and next. Expect Mrazek to play if he’s healthy, but don’t expect much.
His angles and footwork were highly criticized by the Toronto media last year. Hopefully he can make some changes this summer and come into Chicago refreshed.
25th Overall Pick – Sam Rinzel
The Blackhawks selected 17 year defenseman Sam Rinzel from Chaska High and the Waterloo Black Hawks of the USHL with the 25th overall pick acquired in this trade.
The offensive defenseman had 38 points over 22 games with Chaska High, potting 9 goals to go along with 29 assists.
Choosing Rinzel at this point in the draft is viewed as a stretch. I actually mentioned him before as an option for the Hawks to select in the second round. But, he matches everything Head Coach Luke Richardson desires in a defenseman.
Right handed D-Men are highly sought out and Rinzel’s 6 ft 4′ frame makes him a unicorn.
Rinzel is an exceptional skater and is able to make his way through all three zones effortlessly. His footwork compliments his size and allows him to gallop around the ice.
A few clips from Sam Rinzel's 3-game USHL stint.
— Mitchell Brown (@MitchLBrown) January 18, 2022
At only 181 pounds, the Hawks are hoping that they can work with him and get him to fill into his frame. He is only 17 years old, so he has plenty of growing to do.
Rinzel will take his talents to The University of Minnesota starting next year. The 17 year old will have plenty of time to develop into the player the Hawks can work with.
This last second trade allowed the organization to add to their defensive prospect pool in a great way.
Rinzel has a long road ahead of him, but hopefully somewhere down the line we will see him walking the blue line alongside fellow first rounder Kevin Korchinski.
Day 1 of the NHL draft is officially over for the Hawks. Years from now, today will be looked at as the true beginning of the rebuild.
Make sure to tune in tomorrow as the Hawks now have three picks in the 2nd round, four in the 3rd, two in the 6th, and one 7th round draft pick.