Most of the Chicago Blackhawks' young talent is expected to attend the organization's prospect camp when it opens on Sunday, but there will be one significant player missing.
Forward Kevin Hayes will not attend the camp as he and the Blackhawks continue to negotiate an entry-level contract, according to Hayes' agent on Tuesday. Hayes had been to the Blackhawks' last four prospect camps since being selected by the Blackhawks as the No. 24 overall pick in the 2010 draft.
Time is running out for Hayes and the Blackhawks to work out a deal. The Blackhawks have until Aug. 15 to sign him or he becomes an unrestricted free agent. If they are unable to agree on a contract before the deadline, the Blackhawks will be given a compensatory second-round draft pick in 2015.
Hayes' agent Robert Murray said Tuesday the negotiations are ongoing between Hayes and the Blackhawks, and there is a possibility the two sides can still come to an agreement.
"Of course he could still sign with Chicago," Murray wrote in a text on Tuesday.
Murray previously said there were a number of criteria, including depth of the organization, they were using to determine whether Hayes would sign. Hayes would likely begin his professional career in the AHL if he signed with the Blackhawks.
Hayes, 22, is considered by ESPN NHL Draft and Prospects analyst Corey Pronman as one of the Blackhawks' top six prospects. Hayes had 27 goals, 38 assists and a plus-34 rating in 40 games as a senior at Boston College this past season and was a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award.