Washington freshman Markelle Fultz has emerged the consensus pick at No. 1.

He was soon called up for Ottawa’s post-season run in 2013 and delivered with the unforgettable three-goal effort against the Montreal Canadians where the Pageau, Pageau, Pageau chants sprung into action. The same ones newly reborn down the corridors at CTC this past Saturday. Good times for sure.

This would probably be the easiest option for Bowman, depending on the final cap number. He could shed a salary like Marcus Kruger, stick to adding contracts worth under $1 million annually, and try to fill out the depth on his team with roughly the same core. As we projected last month, the Hawks could probably pull this off if they wanted to. It might be necessary with all the no-movement clauses they have preventing bigger changes.

The problem is that, with so many entry-level players on the team, you’d be looking at a roster that’s still quite thin, with a core that’s a year older than it was last time around. Sure, maybe Nick Schmaltz and Gustav Forsling take a step forward, but there’s also a good chance guys like Duncan Keith and Jonathan Toews start showing their age more. If the 2016-17 Blackhawks weren’t a contender, staying the course probably won’t make the 2017-18 Blackhawks a contender.

Washington freshman Markelle Fultz has emerged the consensus pick at No. 1. Fultz leads a strong crop of guards, with UCLA’s Lonzo Ball, Kentucky’s De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk, NC State’s Dennis Smith Jr. and Frank Ntilikina of France all projected to go in the lottery.

Ball has become the draft’s biggest name and most polarizing talent. He’s a transcendent passer with superior basketball IQ, but there are real questions about his ability to create offense in halfcourt settings. The NBA team that lands him would be wise to mimic how UCLA constructed its roster around his gifts.

The last variable left is the lottery, which will be held on May 16. Until then, we’re Baseball Jerseys Wholesale randomizing the order using ESPN’s lottery machine.