The Chicago Blackhawks kicked off its inaugural pick in the second round by taking the first goalie of the draft in Adam Gajan at 35th overall. Chicago picked again at 42 and took winger Roman Kantserov. With their other two picks, the Blackhawks traded its second-round pick to Philadelphia for the 157th pick and a 2024 second-round pick.
Finally, with the 55th pick in the draft, the Blackhawks took right wing Martin Misiak. With those three picks, they added more depth to the right wing. Through two rounds, the Blackhawks took two centers, two right wings, and a goalie.
Welcome to Chicago, Adam 👋 pic.twitter.com/2ity7gwGcJ
— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) June 29, 2023
Here’s a snapshot about each of the picks taken in the second round with a run down of the prospects from Director of Amateur Scouting Mike Doneghey
Adam Gajan – 35th overall – Goalie
Headed to the University of Minnesota-Duluth, Gajan stands at 6’3. The aggregate of rankings had him much lower than this spot, with some ranking him as low as 100 with the highest being at 34.
Doneghey’s Report: “Kinda had his coming out party at the World Juniors. Some will say he singlehandedly carried Slovakia to where they were. His path is go to Green Bay next year of the USHL, he’ll go to Minnesota-Duluth from there–then take it year by year.”
A little more: Doneghey said the that sending him to the USHL will enable to play 55-60 games He’ll have ample time to develop as the Blackhawks will be able to show patience with him. It’s another move to bolster the goaltending depth.
Roman Kantserov – 44th overall – Right Wing
Playing one game in the KHL last season, he’s profiled as a playmaker with the ability to make sharp passes and outmaneuver opposing defenders. He’s signed in Russia through 2023-24. Played the majority of the games in the MHL, the junior league to the KHL.
Doneghey’s Report: “I know Kyle said we had an excellent meeting with him on Tuesday. 26-28 goals in the MHL. He was one of the top scorers in that league. He can flat out shoot it–he’s accurate. His skating is really good and powerful. I don’t know if you got to talk to him but he’s got a thick body on him. Plays inside. I believe he has one year left on his KHL contract.”
A little more: The first of several wings they took in the draft. Maybe “undersized” if you consider that but as Doneghey has stated before, it’s not of concern to them. The kid can play and could be over to North America in just over a year.
Blackhawks trade 51st overall for Pick 167 and a 2024 Second Round Pick
Adding more to the war chest, Davidson flipped the second-round pick to the Flyers for the 167th pick (6th round) and a 2024 second-round pick.
Martin Misiak – 55th overall – Right Wing
Addressing another winger, the Blackhawks opted for Misiak who played in the USHL for Youngstown, notching 27 points (11-16). But his more impressive numbers were in the playoffs where he had 10 points (2-8) in nine games. The Phantoms won their first Clark Cup, a good first step for Misiak on North American ice. He joins other Blackhawks prospects Kevin Korchinski, Nolan Allan and Colton Dach who were Western Hockey League champions with the Seattle Thunderbirds.
Doneghey’s Report: “Played in the World Juniors with Slovakia then he came over to Youngstown of the USHL. Bumped around from center-wing-center-wing. Ultimately ended up as the top line as a center and won the Clark Cup. Big 6’2, skates, initiates contact, in on board battles, almost like a Brandon Saad type player. Big bodied board player. Unknown what he’ll do next year if he’ll go back to Youngstown. There’s also some CHL teams.”
A little more: Here’s the prototypical big, thick winger many fans have been asking for. Misiak will throw his weight around, and will engage in the physical battles while also being versatile on the wing or down the middle.