Connor Bedard

Blackhawks draft Connor Bedard, Oliver Moore in first round

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The Chicago Blackhawks came into the first round of the NHL Draft with two picks, and despite some efforts to acquire another one that’s all they ended up using as they took forwards Connor Bedard and Oliver Moore.

The Bedard move was completely expected, but still generated quite the reaction from Blackhawks fans in Nashville and at The Salt Shed in Chicago.

Bedard scored 71 goals and dished out 72 assists in 57 games with Regina last season, and is expected to join the Blackhawks for the 2023-24 season.

He is one of the draft’s most highly-touted prospects in recent memories, drawing comparisons to the talent level of Auston Matthews during the pre-draft process.

With their second pick, the Blackhawks selected Moore at No. 19.

Blackhawks general manager Kyle Davidson told media on Wednesday that he did not anticipate Moore being available at the 19th spot in the draft, but was thrilled that the team was able to secure one of the draft’s best skaters.

Moore, who will join 2022 Blackhawks first-round pick Sam Rinzel at Minnesota this fall, had eight goals and 17 assists for the U.S. National Development Team in the United States Hockey League last season.

With their lack of trades, the Blackhawks still own a total of nine selections in the final six rounds of the draft, which resumes on Thursday morning. Four of those picks, including the No. 35 overall selection, will come in the second round.

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