Back in the Fall, Chicago Hockey Now ranked the top 10 prospects in the Chicago Blackhawks pipeline. Those rankings had Connor Bedard sitting at the top of the list–while only being in the organization for three months. Today we look at the third best prospect in Kevin Korchinski, who has provided a steady presence in his rookie campaign.
Current Team: Chicago Blackhawks
Stats: 2 Goals; 7 Assists; 9 Points
Drafted: 2022 7th overall by Kyle Davidson
So, How’s It Going?
Korchinski got the call after training camp and has filled in admirably on a team that has trended younger on the blue line, especially with injury playing a role. Outside of when he missed time due to the passing of his father, Korchinski has logged the third most minutes amongst skaters and has progessively gotten better as the season has worn on. Yes, the rookie mistakes have been there, but what else is expected from a 19-year-old in his first NHL season.
Ranking Higher, Lower, Holding, or Graduated?
He’s graduated. As soon as he burned through the ninth game it was evident that Korchinski wasn’t going anywhere.
Now and Later: Where Does Kevin Korchinski Fit In the Grand Scheme of Things?
Korchinski is a building block, a player who will likely be anchoring the Blackhawks blue line for years to come. With Alex Vlasic, there’s a couple very reliable and strong skaters to bolster the back end of the lineup, with more help on the way in terms of young talent. Korchinski’s instincts are aggressive on the offensive side of things which will only pay dividends when up front, the Blackhawks see more talent. Korchinski isn’t afraid to jump up in a play and has already shown that several times, notably against the Maple Leafs when he potted the overtime game winner.
As experience grows, so too will his numbers and impact on the game. It’ll also get a boost when the talent level grows alongside him. I’ve often compared Korchinski to how both Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook both started–on rebuilding teams. Both would be anchors, and play prominent roles in resurrecting the Blackhawks.
Korchinski certainly seems to be trending the same way.