The Crusader Newspaper Group

Blackhawks sign Levshunov to three-year deal

In July, the Chicago Blackhawks agreed to terms with defenseman Artyom Levshunov on a three-year, entry-level contract that runs through the 2026-27 season ($975,000 salary cap hit).

According to the Blackhawks, the organization selected Levshunov with the second overall pick in the 2024 NHL Draft.

“Signing Artyom gives us the opportunity to continue his development in house and take the next step into professional hockey,” said General Manager Kyle Davidson.

“He’s a strong two-way defenseman that has all the tools to be a high-end player in the NHL, and we’re excited to continue his growth at the pro level.”

The Blackhawks said Levshunov, 18, recorded 35 points (9 goals, 26 assists) in 38 games with Michigan State University (NCAA) during the 2023-24 campaign, helping the Spartans to both Big Ten Regular Season and Tournament Championships. His 26 assists and 35 points each ranked second on the club.

Among all NCAA blueliners, he shared ninth in points, which was second among all freshmen defensemen, and shared 10th in goals and 12th in assists. Levshunov also earned Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year honors. Additionally, he was named to the Big Ten First All-Star Team and the ACHA Second All-American Team, noted the Hawks.

Prior to his collegiate career, the 6-foot-2, 210-pound defenseman appeared in 62 regular-season games with the USHL’s Green Bay Gamblers during the 2022-23 season, recording 42 points (13G, 29A), and earning both USHL All-Rookie Team and USHL Third All-Star Team honors.

His 13 goals ranked third among all USHL defensemen, while his 42 points ranked fifth. Additionally, Levshunov helped Belarus to a gold medal at the 2022 IIHF World Junior Championship Division 1 tournament, posting two assists in five games. The Zhlobin, Belarus, native is the highest-selected Belarusian in NHL Draft history, said the Hawks.

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Sports Editor at Chicago Crusader Newspaper

Joseph Phillips is the Sports Editor for the Chicago Crusader Newspaper. He is a Chicago native, who has been a sports writer for over 17 years. He also hosts the SC Media News and Sports Network Q&A radio show on WHPK 88.5 FM Chicago.

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