The Chicago Blackhawks are constantly on the lookout to bolster their prospect depth, and on Thursday night they did just that as they acquired defenseman Gustav Forsling from the Vancouver Canucks in exchange for defenseman Adam Clendening.
Forsling, who has three goals and two assists in 35 games with Linkopings in the Swedish Hockey League, was a star for Team Sweden in the World Junior Championships in December, racking up six points in the preliminary round as the squad won their group.
As for Clendening, he made his NHL debut with the Blackhawks this season and scored his first career goal in a four-game stint on the blue line. With the Rockford IceHogs, Clendening had one goal and 12 assists in 38 games.
For the Blackhawks, this move essentially boils down to one factor: making their prospect base younger and removing a bit of the glut of blue line prospects that they have on the team. Players like Klas Dahlbeck, Trevor van Riemsdyk, and Stephen Johns are all going to get a chance to play on the blue line for the Hawks when Johnny Oduya (and potentially Michal Rozsival) are elsewhere, so Clendening is a player that likely would be on the outside looking in.
With Forsling, the Blackhawks are taking a chance that a player selected in the fifth round of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft will end up panning out. The 18-year old still has plenty of growing to do as a player, and the Blackhawks have the luxury of being patient with him because of the prospect depth they have.