Rockford, Ill. – The 2016 NHL Draft is right around the corner and with it comes the possibility of future hockey stars. The Blackhawks selected seven players in the 2015 NHL Draft with the hopes of finding major contributors to their squad.
During the 2014 NHL draft the Blackhawks chose nine players. IceHogs.com will be taking a look back at these sixteen prospects to see what they accomplished in 2015-16.
2015 Blackhawks Draft Picks:
Left winger Graham Knott, 19, was the Blackhawks first selection and second round pick (54th overall) in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. Knott recorded 42 points (12g-30a) in 68 regular-games with the Ontario Hockey League’s Niagara IceDogs. In his third season with the IceDogs, Knott was third on the team in assists (30). The Holland Landing, Ontario, native helped the Niagara IceDogs capture the Eastern Conference Championship before falling to the London Knights in the OHL Championship.
Defenseman Dennis Gilbert, 19, was the pick in the third round (91st overall) for the Blackhawks in 2015. As a freshmen in 2015-16, Gilbert played in all 37 games for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish recording 10 points (2g-8a) and leading the team with 70 blocked shots. During his time with the Chicago Steel in the United States Hockey League, he was named to the 2014-15 USHL All-Rookie Team and played in the 2015 USHL/NHL Top Prospect Game. The Williamsville, N.Y., native collected 27 points (4g-23a) in 59 games during his lone season with the Steel.
Defenseman Ryan Shea, 19, was selected by the Blackhawks in the fourth round (121st overall) in the 2015 NHL Draft. This past season, Shea skated for the Youngstown Phantoms of the United States Hockey League. The Milton, Mass., native registered seven points (2g-5a) in 28 games for the Phantoms. Shea battled through injuries to start the year but he has great offensive instincts to go with his excellent skating prowess. He has committed to attend Northeastern University in the 2016-17 season.
Right winger Radovan Bondra, 19, was a fifth round choice by the Chicago Blackhawks (151st overall) in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. Bondra played for the Vancouver Giants in 2015-16 where he notched 30 points (15g-15a) in 58 games played. The Trebisov, Slovakia, native skated in five games and scored a goal for the Slovakian National Team in the 2016 World Junior Championships.
Right winger Roy Radke, 19, was the first sixth-round pick for the Blackhawks (164th overall) during the 2015 NHL draft. Radke enjoyed a strong second season with the Barrie Colts of the Ontario Hockey League where he potted 39 points (19g-20a) in 66 contests. During 2014-15, Radke registered 18 points (9g-9a) in 66 games and had a strong postseason scoring four goals in nine games for the Colts. The Chicago, Ill., native previously recorded 40 points (19g-21a) in 49 games for Shattuck St. Mary’s Midget Prep in 2013-14.
Defenseman Joni Tuulola, 20, was the second sixth round selection of the Blackhawks (181st) overall in 2015. Tuulola collected 14 points (2g-12a) in 53 games for Hameenlinna Pallokerho (HPK) of Finland and notched two assists in eight playoff games for HPK U-20. The Hameenlinna, Finland, native also represented Finland at the 2016 World Junior Championships where he tallied an assist in seven games while helping Finland take home the championship. Tuulola has notched 25 points (8g-17a) over three seasons with HPK.
Right Winger John Dahlstrom, 19, was the seventh round pick (211th overall) and final selection for the Chicago Blackhawks in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. Dahlstrom competed for Frolunda HC J20 of the Swedish Hockey League where he tallied 35 points (14g-21a) in 38 games almost being a point-per-game player. The Kungsback, Sweden, native also notched one goal in four games for Sweden in the 2015 U-18 five Nations Tournament and had a pair of helpers in five games for Sweden in the 2014 U-18 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament.
2014 Blackhawks Draft Picks:
Forward Nick Schmaltz, 20, was the Blackhawks first round selection (20th Overall) in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. Schmaltz had a highly productive season last year with the University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks where he amassed 46 points (11g-35a) in 37 games. He led the Fighting Hawks into the Frozen Four and came away victorious against Quinnipiac in the NCAA Division I Hockey Championship. The Verona, Wis., native represented the United States of America in the World Junior Championships where he led USA to a bronze medal and notched 8 points (2g-6a) in 7 games. Schmaltz represented America previously in the 2013-14 World Junior Championships where he was the highest scorer of the tournament with 12 points (4g-8a) in only 4 games. Prior to his time with the Fighting Hawks, Schmaltz was a prolific scorer in the United States Hockey League. He tallied 119 points (37g-82a) in 130 games for the Green Bay Gamblers and led them to the USHL Championship in 2011-12. Schmaltz recently signed a three-year entry level deal with the Chicago Blackhawks on June 19, 2016.
Forward Matheson Iacopelli, 22, was selected by the Blackhawks in the third round (83rd overall) in 2014. Iacopelli skated for Western Michigan University this past season where he registered 7 points (1g-6a) in 27 games for the Broncos. Prior to his time with Western Michigan, Iacopelli racked up big numbers in the USHL playing for the Muskegon Lumberjacks. In two seasons with the Lumberjacks he piled up 100 points (64g-36a) and had a great playoff run in 2014-15 where he amassed 7 points (5g-2a) in 11 games. In the 2013-14 season, the Brownstown, Mich., native led the USHL with 41 goals and tied with Nick Schmaltz (fellow Blackhawks prospect) for seventh in the league in scoring with 63 points.
Forward Beau Starrett, 20, was taken a few picks later in the third round (88th overall) in the 2014 NHL Draft. The 6’5 winger skated for Cornell University where he only participated in 15 games registering 1 point (1g) due to an early season injury. The Bellingham, Mass., native played for the South Shore Kings in the USPHL-Pr where he registered 52 points (13g-39a) in 55 games and was selected as an All-Star in the 2013-14 season after scoring 47 points (11g-36a) in 48 games.
Forward Fredrik Olofsson, 20, was a fourth round draft choice (98th overall) for the Blackhawks in 2014. Olofsson committed to play for the University of Nebraska-Omaha and compiled 17 points (8g-9a) in 34 games played. He also showed great intelligence by being named to the NCHC Academic All-Conference Team. The Helsingborg, Sweden, native had previously played in the USHL over parts of four seasons for both the Green Bay Gamblers and the Chicago Steel. Olofsson found great success in 2014-15 for the Chicago Steel as he racked up 60 points (37g-33a) in 57 games and became a point-per-game skater. He also represented Team Sweden in the Hlinka Memorial tournament in 2013-14.
Defenseman Luc Snuggerud, 20, was taken by the Blackhawks in the fifth round (141st overall) of the 2014 Draft. Snuggerud is teammates with 4th round selection Fredrik Olofsson on the University of Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks. This past year, the Eden Prairie, Minn., native had a strong sophomore campaign for the Mavericks scoring 18 points (4g-14a) in 35 games. He had previously collected 16 points (2g-14a) during his freshmen year. The 6’1” defenseman won the 2014 Reed Larson Award as the top high school defenseman in Minnesota after scoring nine goals and 39 assists for 48 points in 31 games for Eden Prairie High School, helping the Eagles to their first state tournament since 2011.
Defenseman Andreas Soderberg, 20, was the second fifth-round selection (148th overall) in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. Soderberg has been playing in the Swedish Hockey League for Skelleftea over parts of three seasons and has amassed 14 points (2g-12a) in 89 games. The Skelleftea, Sweden, native also represented his home nation of Sweden in the 2014-15 International Juniors Championship.
Forward Dylan Sikura, 21, was the pick for the Blackhawks in the sixth round (178th overall). Sikura registered 28 points (10g-18a) in 39 games for the Northeastern University Huskies and finished as the sixth highest scorer on the team. The Aurora, Ontario, native improved on his freshmen year marks of five goals and two assists for seven points in 25 games. Prior to his time in college, Sikura skated for the Aurora Tigers of the OJHL and posted an impressive 110 points (31g-79a) in 131 regular season games. He also racked up 24 points (12g-12a) in 36 career playoff games during 2011-14.
Goalie Ivan Nalimov, 22, was selected as the second sixth round pick (179th overall) by the Blackhawks in 2014. The Russian goaltender notched a 20-13-3 record, 2.60 GAA and .908 save percentage for the Vladivostok Admiral in the KHL. The Novokuznetsk, Russia, native showed major improvement across the board from his first year stats with Admiral which included a 10-10-5 record, 2.76 GAA and .900 save percentage. Nalimov won a bronze medal with team Russia at the 2014 World Junior Championships recording only one loss in the tournament.
Forward Jack Ramsey, 20, was the final selection of the 2014 NHL Entry draft by the Chicago Blackhawks, taken in the seventh round (208th overall). Ramsey spent this past season with the University of Minnesota Gophers where he scored five points (5a) in 31 games for the Big Ten squad. The Chanhassen, Minn., native spent two seasons with the Penticton Vees of the BCHL where he accumulated 63 points (26g-37a) in 111 games. Ramsey assisted the Vees in capturing the BCHL Championship in 2014-15, registering nine points (3g-6a) in 22 playoff contests.
Season Tickets for 2016-17 on Sale Now: Don’t miss a moment of the action by reserving your seats for the IceHogs 18th season of professional hockey and 10th as the top AHL affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks. Please contact us at (815) 847-6399 or by visiting icehogs.com to claim your spots for this upcoming season.