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Blackhawks Prospects

Blackhawks of Tomorrow: Ethan Del Mastro is Turning Heads

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(Editor’s Note: This is the ninth installment in Chicago Hockey Now’s Blackhawks of Tomorrow series about Chicago Blackhawks prospects. Today we look at defenseman Ethan Del Mastro). 

Analysis

Del Mastro could be one of the middle round draft gems every team dreams of. A fourth round selection in 2021, Del Mastro has carved out quite the reputation for himself. A selection to the OHL second team all-star list doesn’t hurt, either.

The 20-year-old defenseman had over a point-per-game production with the Mississauga Steelheads and Sarnia Sting this season, posting 58 points (7-52) in 52 games. For a team oozing with blue line talent in the prospect pool, Del Mastro skating along with a Kevin Korchinski or Nolan Allan suddenly makes the future looking brighter by the day.

Del Mastro was in the Covid affected class of 2021, one that lost a year of development and didn’t play nearly as many games as they normally would have. Many prospects in this class will buck that trend which shows lower hits in the middle to late rounds of the draft.

Forecast

Del Mastro’s value goes beyond the scoresheet. Named Mississauga’s captain for the 2021-22 season, the defenseman was also a member of Canada’s Gold Medal team at the World Championships wearing the “A.” Aside from the impressive stats, Del Mastro has been an important voice in the locker room.

Add him to the list of Blackhawks prospects with international success as well as being in pressure packed situations. Along with Kevin Korchinski, Colton Dach, Nolan Allan and soon-to-be Blackhawks forward Connor Bedard, the towering defenseman has experience in critical spots.

Standing at 6’4, he can patrol the blue line with physicality but can also collect points in bunches. Initially tagged as a stay at home defenseman, Del Mastro’s offensive contributions only make his rise even more enticing. He logged big minutes in his first season with Mississauga, and of the many promising prospects in the Blackhawks pool, should be one of the most anticipated.

In short Del Mastro checks all the boxes. Leader. High IQ on the ice. Racking up Points. Big bodied. Once upon a time, the Blackhawks relied on two home grown defenseman in Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook. Both would help anchor the blue line for over a decade.

Between Del Mastro, Korchinski, and Allan, Chicago is setting itself up to have an outstanding future on the blue line. It could shape itself up to be another decade with a dominating defensive corps.

Previous Blackhawks of the Future Entries: Kevin Korchinski | Colton Dach | Frank Nazar | Nolan Allan | Gavin Hayes | Drew Commesso | Lukas Reichel | Ryan Greene