POSTED ON Thursday, 12.31.2015 / 2:53 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog
Gustav Forsling picked up a goal and assist for Sweden on Thursday. (Getty Images)

Goodbye, preliminary round. Hello, elimination games. All four Blackhawks prospects played on Day 6 of the 2016 IIHF U20 World Championship, helping their countries decide the quarterfinal matchups. Slovakia dropped a 2-1 decision to Russia, the United States overcame a spirited Denmark team 4-1, Finland defeated the Czech Republic 5-4 in a seesaw affair, and Sweden posted a 5-2 win over Canada.

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POSTED ON Wednesday, 12.30.2015 / 2:44 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog
Nick Schmaltz tallied his first goal of the tournament in USA's 10-1 win over Switzerland. (Getty Images)

With one game remaining in the preliminary round for most teams at the IIHF U20 World Championship, three Blackhawks prospects picked up their first points of the tournament during a high-scoring day of action. Sweden clinched the top spot in Group A after blanking Denmark 5-0 on a 48-9 shot differential, Finland picked up their second win with an 8-3 result over Slovakia, and the United States rode a six-goal first period on its way to recording an eventual 10-1 rout of Switzerland.

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POSTED ON Monday, 12.28.2015 / 12:55 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog
(Getty Images)

After three days at the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship, both groups now have a clearer picture at the halfway point of the preliminary round. All four Blackhawks prospects were in action on Monday in Helsinki, helping their countries jockey for position in the standings.

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POSTED ON Saturday, 12.26.2015 / 2:48 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog
Minas Panagiotakis / Getty Images

After Day 1 of the 2016 IIHF World Championship in Helsinki, the first four games of the tournament are in the books, and two Blackhawks prospects took the ice for their respective countries. Defenseman Joni Tuulola and hosts Finland scored five times in the third period to surge past Belarus 6-0, while forward Nick Schmaltz and Team USA defeated archrival Canada 4-2 in an opening game that was moved up from its traditional time slot of New Year’s Eve.

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POSTED ON Monday, 12.14.2015 / 2:03 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight players who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect/system stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2015-16 season.

(Photo courtesy Rockford IceHogs)

1st Star: C Jake Dowell, Rockford IceHogs (AHL)
The Line: 3GP, 3G, 2A

Dowell is enjoying his most productive offensive stretch since signing a minor-league deal with the IceHogs this season, picking up five points in three games last week to extend his point streak to six games dating back to the beginning of December. The former Blackhawk tallied twice and added an assist in a 5-3 win over Texas last Tuesday, scored the game-winner in a 2-1 win over Iowa on Friday and picked up a helper the next night in Rockford’s 4-1 loss to Grand Rapids. Dowell shares the team lead with 17 points (6G, 11A) in 24 games this season.

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POSTED ON Monday, 12.7.2015 / 12:25 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight players who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect/system stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2015-16 season.

(Photo courtesy Rockford IceHogs)

1st Star: RW Ryan Hartman, Rockford IceHogs (AHL)
The Line:
3GP, 4G, 1A

Hartman tallied in all three of Rockford’s games last week, hitting double digits for the season with the game-winner in a 5-2 victory over San Antonio on Sunday. Earlier in the week, Hartman recorded his first multi-goal game and a season-high three points in a 6-5 overtime win over the Texas Stars. Hartman leads the IceHogs with 10 goals and 16 points in 21 games this season.

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POSTED ON Monday, 11.30.2015 / 12:25 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight players who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect/system stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2015-16 season.

(Photo courtesy Rockford IceHogs)

1st Star: C Dennis Rasmussen, Rockford IceHogs (AHL)
The Line: 3GP, 2G, 2A

Rasmussen grabbed points in all three of Rockford’s games last week, helping the IceHogs go 2-1-0 and keep pace in the AHL’s Central Division. The 25-year-old tallied in a 3-2 overtime win over San Antonio on Wednesday, added a pair of assists in a 3-1 win over Chicago on Friday and finished off his strong week with Rockford’s lone goal in a 2-1 loss at Milwaukee on Saturday. Rasmussen now shares the team lead with six goals and ranks fourth with 10 points in 19 games this season.

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POSTED ON Monday, 11.23.2015 / 2:21 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight prospects who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2015-16 season.

1st Star: G Ivan Nalimov, Admiral Vladivostok (KHL)
The Line: 3-0-0, .941 SV%, 1 SO

Nalimov returned to action for the first time since late October, winning all three of his starts for Admiral Vladivostok last week. He stopped 14 of 16 in a 4-2 win over Sibir on Tuesday, made 18 saves on 19 shots Thursday in a 2-1 win over Metallurg and finished with a 16-save shutout over Metallurg on Friday, his fourth of the season. The 2014 sixth-rounder improved his record this season to 13-8-2 with a .914 save percentage and 2.35 goals-against average.

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POSTED ON Monday, 11.16.2015 / 2:28 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight prospects who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2015-16 season.

(Tyler Ingham/UND Sports)

1st Star: C Nick Schmaltz, University of North Dakota (NCHC)
The Line:
2GP, 2G, 4A

Schmaltz had a breakout weekend, posting six points to help North Dakota complete a two-game sweep of Miami University. Four of those points came in a big 6-2 win on Friday, as the 2014 first-round pick assisted on UND’s first three goals before starting—and finishing—an unbelievable passing sequence to cap off the scoring with his first goal of the season.

Watch the goal here:

On Saturday, Schmaltz assisted on the opening goal, then added the game-tying tally late in the third period to force overtime in an eventual 4-3 win. Schmaltz now shares the team lead with 13 points in 12 games during his sophomore season.

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POSTED ON Monday, 11.9.2015 / 3:37 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight prospects who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2015-16 season.

(Photo courtesy Rockford IceHogs)

1st Star: D Ville Pokka, Rockford (AHL)
The Line: 2GP, 1G, 2A

Pokka’s play has been a big reason the Rockford IceHogs are on an eight-game point streak, righting the ship after dropping three of their first four contests this season. The 21-year-old contributed one assist in Friday’s 4-1 win over Grand Rapids; he added another on Saturday against Milwaukee, then scored his first goal of the season to tie the game at 2-2 before the team ultimately lost in overtime. Pokka leads team defensemen and shares the overall team lead (among current roster players) with seven points in 12 games this season; he also leads the club with 29 shots on goal.

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