Chicago Blackhawks: They should trade No. 3 if they don’t want Byram

(Photo by Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)
(Photo by Marissa Baecker/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Blackhawks should trade the third overall pick if they aren’t going to use it to take the third best player in the draft.

The Chicago Blackhawks got extremely lucky at the 2019 NHL Draft lottery. They won the right to make the third overall pick. The top two picks are locks. Jack Hughes is going to the New Jersey Devils and Kaapo Kakko is going to the New York Rangers. The intrigue begins when the Blackhawks are on the clock. There is a crop of young players that could, by definition, go to the Hawks at three.

There is only one player, however, who deserves to be taken with the third overall pick. His name is Bowen Byram. He is by far the third best player in the draft. In fact, the gap between Kakko and Byram is closer than the gap between Byram and whoever goes forth. This is a guy who by all accounts, should be a true number one defenseman in the NHL when he is fully developed.

The Blackhawks made a trade for now former Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Olli Maatta. This is a move that they hope gives them some help because they really need it. He is an upgrade to what that have but he isn’t the answer, especially with a four million dollar cap hit. Byram would be a guy they can have come in relatively quickly and contribute right away.

A good example of a comparable would be Boston Bruins defenseman, Charlie McAvoy. McAvoy joined the Bruins after his season at Boston University ended so he could play with them in the playoffs and he was awesome. He hasn’t played at a level lower than the NHL since and now he is one of the best in the NHL in such a short time. Byram has that kind of a ceiling.

Lots of people have a problem with taking him because of the fact that they have used a lot of recent draft capital on defense. First of all, you can never have too much depth at that position and two, none of them are even close to Byram in terms of their ceiling.

If the Blackhawks don’t want to take Byram for some odd reason, they should simply trade down a few picks. Someone below them is smart enough to believe that Byram is the third best player in the draft and would probably give up something nice to move up a spot or two to get him. And that team would reap the benefits of a true number one defenseman being on their team one day. The Blackhawks know what it is like to have one because Duncan Keith was that for a very long time, and he would still be able to mentor a young stud like Byram.

Related Story. Patrick Kane is a Legend. light

Byram is an awesome future player and hopefully, the Blackhawks see this as an opportunity to get the best out of the final years of Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane‘s prime. With this draft pick and a smart signing or two over the summer could lead to the Blackhawks making a return to the postseason and if you took watched the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs you can see that anything can happen as long as you get in.