2023 NHL Draft: Blackhawks select Janne Peltonen with seventh-round pick

The Blackhawks picked up their lone defensemen this draft with their last pick.

2023 NHL Draft: Blackhawks select Janne Peltonen with seventh-round pick
Source: Blackhawks' official Twitter account

With their final selection of the draft (No. 195), the Blackhawks selected Janne Peltonen – the only defensemen they picked this year. He was with Kärpät in the Finnish league last season, splitting time between both the U18 and U20 levels with the club. Peltonen had one goal and three assists in six games with U18 SM-sarja before being moved up to U20 SM-sarja where he picked up nine points (3 G, 6 A) in 40 games while in a top-four role. Peltonen also had another two goals and two assists in 13 international games for Finland last year.

Peltonen is perhaps the most raw player the Blackhawks have selected yet, but there is some upside with his frame (6-foot-3) and defensive foundation. He's been limited offensively and his skating is considered below average currently, but the former isn't always necessary in a defensemen and the latter can be developed. Peltonen's defensive showing for Finland on the international stage seems to the highlight of his young career so far.