CALGARY, AB – MAY 15: Johnny Gaudreau #13 of the Calgary Flames takes a shot on Jake Oettinger #29 of the Dallas Stars during the first period of Game Seven of the First Round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Scotiabank Saddledome on May 15, 2022 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images)
The Chicago Blackhawks were made to look like a really foolish franchise on Sunday night. It is mostly because of the fact that Artemi Panarin scored in overtime of game seven against the Pittsburgh Penguins to send the New York Rangers to the second round.
Now, Panarin is going to meet Teuvo Teravainen (who the Hawks mistakenly traded to get rid of Bryan Bickell’s contract) and the Carolina Hurricanes. It is just a really bad look for this team and it is going to take a long time to move on.
However, later in the evening, the Dallas Stars took advantage of another major mistake made by Stan Bowman and the previous Chicago Blackhawks front office. This is a story that people are just now starting to realize.
At the 2017 NHL Draft, the Chicago Blackhawks traded down from pick 26 to pick 29 from the Dallas Stars in the first round that was being held at the United Center. With pick 29, the Blackhawks drafted Henri Jokiharju.
With that pick at 26, the Dallas Stars selected goaltender Jake Oettinger. This is prominent right now because he had a playoff for the ages. The Stars had a legit chance to defeat the Calgary Flames which would be a major upset and it was mostly thanks to this kid.
The game went to overtime tied at two. Eventually, Johnny Gaudreau scored the game-winner on Oettinger which ended a marvelous game. It was the 67th shot of the night on Oettinger and only the third one that got past him. Making 64 saves on 67 shots is absolutely incredible.
The Stars themselves had only 28 shots. They were outplayed hard by the Flames and still had a chance to win. That is all because of the heroic goaltending from young Jake Oettinger. He is going to be a Stallworth in Dallas’s net for a long time.
If only the Chicago Blackhawks had a goalie like that. They had Corey Crawford at the time of this draft mistake but it is clear that they never had his inevitable long-term replacement waiting in the wings. They traded down to take a mediocre defenseman and allowed the Stars to land this guy.
It gets even worse when you remember what the Hawks did with Jokiharju. They traded him to the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for Alex Nylander who was awful for them. Landing Oettinger would have been nice but the fact that they don’t even have Jokiharju makes it worse. This team will take a long time to recover from the Stan Bowman era.