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Prospects watch: Danault, Ross impress

3/12/2013

Here's a look at some of the prospects in the Chicago Blackhawks' system:

Garrett Ross, left wing: Drafted in the fifth round in 2012, the 20-year-old Ross has been scoring goals at a high rate for the Saginaw Spirit in the Ontario Hockey League. He ranks fifth in the league with 43 goals in 59 games. He scored 12 goals in February and has three goals in five games in March. He also has 45 assists.

Phillip Danault, center: The No. 26 overall pick in 2011, the 20-year-old Danault continues to be on a tear for the Moncton Wildcats in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. He has 35 points in 23 games since being traded to the Wildcats. He had three goals and 13 assists in February, and he already has three goals and two assists in five games in March. He recently had a nine-game points streak snapped.

Brandon Pirri, center: A second-round pick in 2009, the 21-year-old Pirri has shown he's ready if the Blackhawks come calling. He has four goals and eight assists in his last 10 games and leads the Rockford IceHogs of the American Hockey League with 47 points, which includes 18 goals and 29 assists.

Jeremy Morin, left wing: Acquired in a trade with Atlanta in 2010, the 21-year-old Morin could also be in consideration if a spot opens with the Blackhawks. He's had five goals and one assist in four games for the IceHogs in March. He has 22 goals and 19 assists for the season.

Teuvo Teräväinen, center: Drafted No. 18 overall in 2012, the 18-year-old Teräväinen has 13 goals and 17 assists in 43 games for Jokerit Helsinki in the SM-liiga this season. He had a goal and an assist in a win on March 5. Jokerit leads the league with 110 points with one regular-season game remaining.

Brandon Whitney, goaltender: A seventh-round pick in 2012, the 18-year-old Whitney has a 27-18-4 record with four shutouts, a 3.03 goals-against average and .902 save percentage while playing with the Victoriaville Tigres in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. In February, he was 7-1-0 with a 2.01 goals-against average and .930 save percentage.

Mark McNeil, center: The No. 18 overall pick in the 2011 draft, the 20-year-old McNeil leads the Prince Albert Raiders of the Western Hockey League with 64 points. He has 23 goals and 41 assists. He has eight assists in his last eight games.

Dillon Fournier, defenseman: A second-round pick in 2012, the 18-year old Fournier has six goals, 17 assists, a plus-4 rating and 59 penalty minutes in 56 games for the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League this season.

Jimmy Hayes, right wing: Acquired in a 2010 trade with Toronto, the 23-year-old Hayes scored a hat trick and dished out two assists in a win for the IceHogs on March 9. He has 22 goals and 17 assists for the season.

Adam Clendening, defenseman A second-round pick in 2011, the 20-year-old Clendening has one goal and six assists for the IceHogs in five games in March. He recently had a three-assist game. He has a team-high 30 assists to go along with six goals and a plus-8 rating for the season.

Kevin Hayes, center Drafted 24th overall in 2010, the 20-year-old Hayes' college season at Boston College was cut short due to a contusion in his left quadriceps muscle, which required surgery. He played in his last game on Feb. 26. He had six goals and 19 assists in 27 games this season.

Ben Smith, right wing A sixth-round pick in 2008, the 24-year-old Smith is starting to produce again for the IceHogs after missing most of January and February due to an injury. He has three goals and one assist in five games in March. He has 18 goals and 13 assists in 44 games this season.

Mac Carruth, goaltender A seventh-round pick in 2010, the 20-year-old Carruth has continued to flourish for the Portland Winterhawks in the Western Hockey League this season. He has a 29-7-2 record with seven shutouts, a 2.08 goals-against average and .929 save percentage. He's had 13 games of 30-or-more saves this season.