Despite having just a 3.0 percent chance of landing the No.3 overall pick, the Chicago Blackhawks were the biggest movers in the NHL Draft Lottery.
After years of continued success, the Blackhawks have missed the playoffs in back-to-back seasons and will pick in the top-10 in consecutive seasons for the first time since 2006 & 2007 when they selected Jonathan Toews (No.3 overall) and Patrick Kane (No.1 overall).
Their last three first-round picks have all been used on defensemen:
With the No.3 Overall Pick in the 2019 NHL Draft, the Chicago Blackhawks select…
Alex Turcotte — C — United States 🇺🇸
Turcotte grew up less than 50 miles outside of Chicago and reportedly idolized Toews, making him a logical No.3 overall pick.
Outside of Dylan Strome, who the Blackhawks acquired from the Arizona Coyotes last season, they don’t have any top-end centre prospects to carry the torch when Toews’ career starts to wind down. Most of their top prospects are on the blueline and taking Turcotte here will help to re-stock the forward cupboards. Evan Barratt is probably their best centre prospect at the moment. The 2017 third-round pick (No.90 overall) has risen quickly since his draft year. Barratt was second on Penn State’s roster in points (43) this season.
Turcotte spent his season with the USA Hockey National Team Development Program, where he totaled 27 goals and 35 assists (62 points) across 37 games. Turcotte’s draft stock could have taken a hit because of a lower-body injury that cost him 22 games, but he looks like the player most likely to go after Jack Hughes and Kaapo Kakko. Turcotte has committed to play at the University of Wisconsin in 2019-20, where he will continue to fill out his 5-foot-11, 185 lbs. frame. He plays a high-speed, 200-foot game that should make it easy for coaches to trust him when he’s NHL-ready in a couple of years.
Turcotte might not be the best passer in the draft like Trevor Zegras, the best skater like Jack Hughes or have the best shot like Cole Caufield, but what makes him my No. 3 prospect is his incredibly well-rounded game and ability to do everything at a high-end level. — Corey Pronman (The Athletic)
Alex has a combination of important assets in today’s game, like skating ability, being able to play above the pace of what the game is, reading the play, hockey sense and compete That’s not even mentioning puck skills, but his skating, hockey sense and compete are at a very high level and very important when translating to what the pro game is today. — David Gregory (Central Scouting)
- #4 — HockeyProspect.com
- #5 — Future Considerations
- #4 — ISS Hockey
- #4 — NHL Central Scouting (NA Skaters)
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