The Chicago Blackhawks are undergoing some changes to their roster this summer, but they’re staying consistent with their minor league affiliates, as they have agreed to a new deal to retain the Rockford IceHogs as their AHL squad.
The IceHogs, who became the AHL club for the Blackhawks prior to the 2007-08 season, will serve in that capacity through the end of the 2021-22 campaign, according to the new affiliation agreement the two teams are entering into.
Some of the Blackhawks’ top players have made stops with the IceHogs before joining the big club. Niklas Hjalmarsson, Corey Crawford, and Andrew Shaw all spent time with the IceHogs during their careers, and former Blackhawks like Dave Bolland, Dustin Byfuglien, and Teuvo Teravainen are also products of the squad.
There could be still more players making the jump from Rockford to Chicago this season, with guys like Vincent Hinostroza, Ryan Hartman, and Ville Pokka all having good opportunities to join the Blackhawks’ roster.
The current incarnation of the IceHogs started life in Baltimore in 1995, and moved to Cincinnati before moving to Rockford in 2007. The IceHogs’ name comes from a United Hockey League team that played in Rockford from 1999 to 2007.