Stan Bowman was interviewed on ChicagoBlackhawks.com’s podcast, Blackhawks Insider, in audio posted on Monday. A portion of Bowman’s conversation with Adam Kempenaar is transcribed here.
“The Blackhawks Way of playing hockey”
One piece of news coming out of the audio portion pertained to July’s prospect camp. Bowman is inviting fewer players and there will be less scrimmage time. He’s looking at this year as less of a tryout (or evaluation) camp and more of a development camp. They’re experimenting with a different ideas at the assistance and suggestion of Joel Quenneville and the coaching staff. Bowman said there will be a bigger focus on “skills they’re going to need to have in order to eventually play for us.” Just the idea of fewer players would seem to indicate one scrimmage per day instead of two. On the topic of scrimmages, Bowman said “we are certainly going to have some of those but it was predominately scrimmages in the past.”
On the talent pool in this year’s draft, Bowman is optimistic that there is enough that he’ll get “good” future NHLers but he doesn’t see high-end goaltenders in this draft, which is consistent with the scouting reports. Bowman said they “don’t necessarily have a one position” they’re focusing on. He said in the past they had holes at center and defense but felt they’ve addressed those in the past couple of years. He said he hadn’t had talks with any GM’s on moving up or trading down, but revealed those discussions between GM’s don’t typically come into play until the week and days leading into the draft. He said they’re working at getting the best group of picks, regardless of position.
That taken, the Hawks are very weak on the depth chart at right wing. Jeremy Morin is better on the left side. Kyle Beach and Igor Makarov can play either. Beach is probably better on the left but his game is a little far off to say for sure. Makarov could Rockford’s top right wing by default if Morin and Beach keep to their off wing.
Longer-range, Bowman shared his thoughts and is high on Justin Holl’s skating ability; the toning down of Stephen Johns and Kevin Hayes taking the next step.
–Conflicting reports now coming out of Canada on the search for a new Winnipeg coach. Today’s Winnipeg Sun is reporting there will be a second-round of interviews with finalists Claude Noel and Mike Haviland.