Second City Hockey 2022-23 Pre-Season Blackhawks The Top 25 Under 25 series ranks the organization’s top 25 players under 25 as of October 1, 2022. The rankings are determined by a composite score from the four SCH editors. Each participant used their own metric of current capacity and production versus future projections to rank each player. All four ballots will be released once the round is complete.
Alex Vlasic got his first taste of NHL hockey last spring, signing with the Chicago Blackhawks on March 15 after his junior season ended in Boston. Vlasic was named Hockey East Conference All-Star in his final NCAA season while playing top minutes for the Terriers.
Vlasic was drafted into the NHL after signing with Chicago, with ice times of 6:10, 7:54 and 7:00, respectively, in his first three games. He finished the season with consecutive games lasting more than 20 minutes on the ice, including a season-high 21:02 in a 4-3 Blackhawks win over the Vegas Golden Knights on April 27. Vlasic has always been touted as a defensive player first, but he scored his first NHL goal on April 20 against the Arizona Coyotes thanks to a lucky jump from a former Blackhawks draft pick:
There were no other memorable moments from Vlasic’s first cup of coffee with the NHL, which isn’t the worst thing in the world for a defenseman – especially one who isn’t going to light things up on the side. ice offensive. Vlasic’s expected goal share of 53.65% was about 10% above team rate when he played, so the Blackhawks had higher quality possession with Vlasic on the ice and he wasn’t playing tricks. minutes completely sheltered. It’s nothing that will put Vlasic in the Hall of Fame yet, but it’s a positive sign for a defender who couldn’t legally buy a drink in the United States until June.
The most interesting part of Vlasic’s time with the Blackhawks is that he stayed with the parent club for the final two months of the season, never joining the other prospects at Rockford as they qualified and played in the playoffs. of the Calder Cup. This suggests the organization could be higher on Vlasic than other D prospects, but it’s something we’ll need to watch going forward.
One minor detail to watch out for with Vlasic: He’s currently listed at 6-6, 199 pounds on the Blackhawks’ roster, which is his first two seasons in Boston. On last season’s Terriers roster, however, he’s at 6-6, 211. Vlasic isn’t going to rise to 250, but a common refrain about his development was that he needed to add muscle to this lanky, 6 -6 frame. It will be something we could learn at the start of training camp in a few weeks.
Other than that, Vlasic would appear to be another AHL prospect, given the Blackhawks’ repeated pledge not to rush any of their NHL prospects. A full season of top minutes in the AHL wouldn’t be the worst outcome for Vlasic, but he also appears to be high on the list of preferred commands if spots open up in Chicago.
Seems like we’ve said that a lot, doesn’t it?