Tuesday, October 04, 2016

One Regular Season Game for Hjalmarsson

Didn't seem like last year, the suspensions were coming hard and fast before the season started?  This year, it doesn't seem so bad, this one being the second one of the preseason, but the first of two that bleeds into the regular season.

For a charge on St. Louis' Ty Rattie, Chicago defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson has had his preseason cut short and will indeed miss the opening night for the Blackhawks, Tuesday night, at home to the Red Wings.  On the plus side, Rattie was not hurt on the play and he won't be missing any time after the hit.

There is no doubt that the 29-year old Swede is a hard-playing defenseman and he has a way for finding some offense as well, last season, he posted 24 points in 81 games and my early projections for him are to stay the course, in and around the 25-point mark.  This suspension shouldn't hurt those overall projections, as one game doesn't necessarily hurt his scoring rate.

He was the 68th ranked defenseman in scoring last season and with a deep draft, he would certainly figure in somewhere.  Against my projections, one of my early mock drafts had him going in the 13th of 14 rounds, but I would imagine he would figure in there somewhere.

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