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Blackhawks ship Jokiharju to Sabres for Nylander in shocking prospect swap

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Chicago and Buffalo determined to spice issues up on a quiet Tuesday, with the Blackhawks sending defenseman Henri Jokiharju to the Sabres in change for winger Alex Nylander. For each, it presents a chance to thrive with a brand new franchise.Henri Jokiharju|Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire through Getty ImagesChicago and Buffalo determined to spice issues up on a quiet Tuesday, with the Blackhawks sending defenseman Henri Jokiharju to the Sabres in change for ahead Alex Nylander.
On paper, the deal is a little bit puzzling. Jokiharju was stable with Chicago previous to the World Junior Championship over the winter, however was despatched all the way down to Rockford afterwards to get additional seasoning. Nevertheless, the Blackhawks’ acquisitions of Olli Maatta and Calvin de Haan meant Jokiharju wasn’t assured a spot with the massive membership. He now has the chance to step right into a spot on a Sabres crew that’s nonetheless rebuilding and provides sturdy, two-way depth on the suitable aspect. Jokiharju is coming off of a season that noticed him win gold on the World Championship and world juniors, and his 12 factors in 38 video games made him a reputation to observe early within the season.
For Nylander, this serves as a welcome change of surroundings for the struggling ahead. At no level prior to now three seasons has he carried out sufficient to earn a full-time roster spot in Buffalo, however he was starting to pattern upwards within the AHL, his 12-goal, 31-point effort in 49 video games final season his finest in three campaigns. At 21, it’s too early to name the 2016 eighth-overall choose a bust – and let’s not overlook how the Blackhawks have helped rework Dylan Strome’s profession after he had failed to slot in with the Arizona Coyotes, who drafted him third general in 2015.
For each gamers, it’s all a bunch of what-ifs at this level, nevertheless. Each fell of their respective depth charts this season and, in Nylander’s case, alternatives had been restricted. The Swede was as soon as a prime prospect within the Sabres system, one that also struggles to seek out offensive depth. Nylander fell from 13th to 54th within the span of 1 yr in The Hockey Information’ annual Future Watch subject and didn’t discover – nor was he ever actually a candidate to get an opportunity to spark – chemistry with Jack Eichel. Whereas nonetheless early, the fourth-line proper winger place might come all the way down to Nylander and Dylan Sikura, with Sikura, 23, having the slight edge in age. This can be a dangerous transfer for the Blackhawks, who a crew with two 24-year-olds because the youngest gamers on the blueline.
With that mentioned, the Blackhawks have a number of proficient younger prospects on the purpose, corresponding to Adam Boqvist, Nicolas Beaudin, Ian Mitchell and Lucas Carlsson. Troube is that they received’t be prepared for a few years, not less than. The query now could be: was this deal made a yr too early? No person is aware of but, nevertheless it’s a minor deal that might have massive implications sooner or later for either side.
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Tags: buffalo sabres, chicago blackhawks, nhlConnect: Concerning the AuthorSteven EllisSteven Ellis is a Digital Content material Producer for The Hockey Information. He spends his free time listening to music you would not like and watches obnoxiously-long motor races.

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