Blackhawks Prospect Plans To Sign After Declining To Last Year

He declined signing with the Chicago Blackhawks last year, but now, after a breakthrough season at Notre Dame in the NCAA, 2020 third-round pick Landon Slaggert is now intending to sign his entry-level contract with the Hawks after his college season is done. He told Ben Pope of the Chicago Sun-Times he never had any intention of waiting things out to become a free agent next summer.

[I’m] definitely hoping to sign with the Hawks. It seems like the right organization for me for a number of reasons. I feel comfortable with all the people who have helped me so far. It also feels like the right opportunity and the right spot. I’m excited to see what’s in the cards there.

The 6-foot, 182-pound forward prospect has already poured in a personal-best 16 goals for Notre Dame in 26 games this season, while registering 25 points and a plus/minus of +9. His previous high in his last three years there was 12 goals.

He told Pope there were several main reasons that he decided to go back to school for a 4th year this season rather than turn pro last year:

  • He was excited about his leadership role with the Fighting Irish
  • His younger brother Carter entered the program this year and he wanted to help show him the ropes
  • He simply thought he could take that next step to another level in his game after a poor season last year (7 goals in 35 games)
“I still had some work to be done,” Slaggert said. “I knew that’s not how I wanted to go out. It was always a dream of mine to wear the gold helmet, and I didn’t want it to leave a bad taste in my mouth.”

Blackhawks assistant general manager Mark Eaton said that Slaggert is, among their forward prospects, "probably the most NHL-ready out of all of them. If you look at the state of the Blackhawks, he’s one that could potentially get an opportunity here pretty soon.”

He'll enter the next hockey season at his age-22 season, and we could be seeing him join the young Hawks uprising. 

Photo: John Mersits / USA TODAY NETWORK