The Chicago Blackhawks‘ long-term depth continues to be the envy of many teams within the NHL, especially at the center position. In Europe, Teuvo Teravainen continues to look like a consistent top-six talent. In the AHL and on the verge of consistent NHL minutes, the Blackhawks have Brandon Pirri and Wade LeBlanc. Yet, the man that will push the pace of all centers within the Blackhawks system is current Boston College Eagles forward Kevin Hayes.
Although listed as a center, Kevin is best served joining his brother Jimmy Hayes on the wing if he is to reach the NHL level. Hayes has proved to be a prolific scorer at the NCAA level, and his line has provided for 67 points and a +54 rating in 11 undefeated games since December 6. Boston College is ranked second in the country.
Hayes has been scoring at will this season, and should continue to do so if he can remain healthy. Since a major quadriceps injury sustained his junior year, Hayes has bounced back to be third in the NCAA in points per game with 1.80. He also ranks fifth in assists per game with 1.04.
Unlike his brother Jimmy, Kevin relies on quickness but does not have the same frame as his older brother. At 6-foot-2, however, he is still capable of playing quality defense, as shown by Boston College’s NCAA best +2.16 scoring margin. Per hockeysfuture.com, Hayes’ skating is his weakness, but if he ends up on contract in AHL Rockford, the intense environment will facilitate improvement as he begins his professional career.
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