Blackhawks' GM Kyle Davidson open to trading up in 2023 NHL draft
Kyle Davidson open to trading up in 2023 NHL draft originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
All the chatter of the Chicago Blackhawks' offseason has been surrounded by Connor Bedard and his future impact on the Hawks. The Hawks received the rights to the first overall pick in the draft and it's almost certain they'll bring in Bedard to solidify a cornerstone of their rebuild.
One caveat to the Hawks' draft that has been masked by the excitement of Bedard is the draft capital they possess in the 2023 NHL entry draft. General manager Kyle Davidson and the Blackhawks' front office have 11 draft picks in this draft, including two first-round picks (No. 1 and No. 19) and four second-rounders.
Are the Blackhawks willing to trade some of these picks, specifically the second-rounders, to move up in the draft?
"It's definitely something we're exploring," Davidson told Mully & Haugh on 670 the Score. "I think the level of success we reach will be dictated by the level of player we can acquire. And logic dictates that the higher you are in the draft, the better chance you have of getting a good player. And so we're going to explore the opportunities available to us to potentially move up again."
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It makes sense for the Blackhawks to try and move into the first round with the cornucopia of second-round picks they have. This draft is earmarked as a talented, top-heavy class with some depth.
The draft is highlighted by Bedard, Adam Fantilli and Matvei Michkov. But there are a considerable number of talented players below them in the first round.
"We've got eight picks in the first three rounds of the draft, which is a lot," Davidson said. "And I will concede that that's a lot. I think it's probably unlikely that we make all those picks.
"So how that manifests itself, whether it's in a move up, whether we move some picks for future picks or something like that. You know, that remains to be seen. But that's a lot of picks."
Last year, the Blackhawks made three picks in the first round amid trading players to make them happen. Davidson has been a collector of draft picks and it should be expected the Hawks find a way to move up in the draft with the trove of picks they have in this year's draft.
Stay tuned for the NHL draft on June 28-29.
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