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Blackhawks Plan for Lukas Reichel: "Keep Playing and Playing"

The Blackhawks have no plans to rush Lukas Reichel in his development. In fact, he'll "keep playing and playing" at the AHL level.
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Lukas Reichel IceHogs Blackhawks

Photo: Todd Reicher/Rockford IceHogs

On Wednesday, following the Chicago Blackhawks win over the Pittsburgh Penguins, head coach Derek King addressed the media. One of the topics King discussed was the progression of 2020 first-round pick Lukas Reichel.

Reichel has been sensational in the AHL with the Rockford IceHogs, and the press was wondering what the plan was for the German forward. Per King, it's quite simple.

In eight games this season with Rockford, Reichel paces the team in scoring with eight points (six goals, two assists). In addition, Reichel recently recorded a hat trick in the IceHogs' win over the Manitoba Moose a few days ago.

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Reichel looks like he belongs. However, every young player struggles, and the German native has only played eight games in North America. The best thing for his development is to continue racking up big minutes in Rockford while playing in every situation. It is much better for him to be the big fish in the AHL than the little fish in the NHL at this point in time.

However, Blackhawks fans should not be discouraged. The Hawks have won two games in a row and are looking to add to that on Friday at home. The NHL team is fine at this point without him, and rather than stunt his growth and rush him, the new regime is doing the right thing by leaving him with the IceHogs. If fans want to see him in action, the IceHogs are a short drive away, or fans can see him when Rockford visits Rosemont to take on the Chicago Wolves.

The Blackhawks, as mentioned before, are back in action on Friday at the United Center. The team welcomes the lowly Arizona Coyotes to town. In the same breath, the IceHogs welcome the Chicago Wolves to BMO Harris Bank Center in Rockford on Friday as well. Perhaps fans can catch both games while relaxing at home, as the games will be on ESPN+ and AHL TV, respectively.