The Chicago Blackhawks are holding their annual Prospect Camp starting today and running through Monday at Johnny’s Ice House West from 10am – 1:30pm (roughly). Sessions are open to the public, and I do suggest getting there somewhat early — seats are very limited, and they fill up quickly!

For those of you who are going to see any of the on-ice sessions this weekend, we thought we would put up a who-to-watch-out-for post here to give you at least some idea of who is likely to stand out.

FORWARDS:

Alex & Terry Broadhurst, New Lennox, IL: The home-town boys will be somewhat lost in the shuffle among the big fellas at forward. At 5’11” each, they’ll have to rely on speed and quick feet to stand out. Alex (18) was drafted in the 7th round this year, and older brother Terry (22) is at camp as a tryout invitee.

Phillip Danault, Victoriaville, Quebec: The Blackhawks second pick in the first round in 2011, analysts considered his selection either genius or puzzling. This prospect camp will likely determine who was right.

Rob Flick, London, Ontario: Flick was a participant in last year’s prospect camp, and in the intervening year has made an impression with Mississauga of the OHL (Juniors). His St. Michaels’ Majors advanced to the Memorial Cup Finals on his game-winning goal against Owen Sound. If his speed is at par, he could advance to Rockford this season. Flick was picked in the 4th round in the 2010 draft.

Jimmy & Kevin Hayes, Boston, MA: The Hayes Brothers have been the talk of the Blackhawks’ prospects since Chicago traded to acquire Jimmy shortly after drafting Kevin last summer. They are listed at 6’5″ and 6’2″ respectively, but after seeing them next to each other at last year’s Prospect Camp, I can tell you that Kevin is gaining on his older brother! Big, tough, and fast — that’s what Jimmy hopes to bring to the IceHogs next year, and Kevin to Boston College as he starts his sophomore campaign.

Mark McNeill, Langley, British Columbia: “He’s ready to go right now!” was the chant from the TSN analysts as Chicago took McNeill in the first round of this year’s draft. At 18 years old he’s already 6’1″ and 211 lbs, and he does know how to throw his weight around. He’s a long shot to make the roster, but look to this guy to be a man among boys at Prospect Camp. He could earn himself an invitation to training camp in the fall with a good showing this weekend.

Steve Moses, Leominster, MA: Moses is a tryout invitee at Prospect Camp, and we mention him here merely to make you aware of his physical stature: 5’9″, 170 lbs. That guy getting flattened to a crimson stain on the ice by the Hayes Brothers? That’s Moses.

Brandon Saad, Gibsonia, PA: Saad fell out of the 2011 draft’s first round without being chosen, and the Blackhawks picked him up in round #2. His ranking among North American skaters in late-season scouting reports indicated that he lacked the drive and physical play to make it to the next level. Prospect Camp will give us a peek at whether that’s true.

Andrew Shaw, Belleville, Ontario: Some guys get drafted on pure heart. This guy’s one of them. Look for Shaw to be the guy who shows up everywhere on the ice causing mayhem. At 5’10” & 180 lbs., you may have to squint.

DEFENSE:

Adam Clendening, Wheatfield, NY: Clendening was drafted in the 2nd round of this year’s draft, and the scouting report on him is somewhat disappointing. Not fast, not big, not tough, no cannon of a shot from the point. The good news: Clendening has excellent puck-moving skills with good lateral movement that buys him time in clutch situations, and he is especially quick and accurate with passes in mid-ice transition. He’s 3 – 5 years away from getting more than a passing glance at training camp, but hey: Duncan Keith started out about the same way.

Stephen Johns, Ellwood City, PA: This will be the wall that the forwards run into at the blue line. 6′ 4″, 221 lbs. Yikes. At 19 years old, he still may not be done growing. He’ll likely be back at Notre Dame in the fall, but it will be interesting to see if he has the speed to keep up with the guys at this level.

Joe Lavin, Worcester, MA: Lavin’s invitation to camp is a bit of a puzzler, because he’s signed. When his season was over at Notre Dame he signed a 2-year deal with the Blackhawks and reported to Rockford. He’s a 2nd-round pick from 2007, and has developed at about the rate one would expect for a defenseman. So this guy’s the standard the other D-men at Camp are shooting for.

Dylan Olsen, Salt Lake City, UT: Another “prospect” that is under contract, the former 1st-round pick in 2009 bailed on his sophomore season at Minnesota – Duluth (pity, they went on to win the NCAA Div. I Championship) and joined the IceHogs after returning from the World Junior Championships — where he played for Canada. Hmm. Not sure how that works, exactly…

GOAL:

This is supposed to be where I tell you who is going to “stand out.”

Notice the big empty space.

We have three of our prospect goaltenders attending, one from this year’s draft and two from 2010, all of whom are 19 or younger. The other three are tryout invitees. This weekend you will not, I repeat, NOT witness any display of exceptional goaltending. This weekend will consist of six guys getting lit up like their skate laces are tied together.

The Blackhawks have no viable prospects in the system at this point, and this weekend’s event will prove that beyond any doubt.

Are you listening, Stan?