Feb 9, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane (88) with the puck during the third period against the Arizona Coyotes at the United Center. Arizona won 3-2 in a shoot out. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports
#1: No Patrick Kane (For A While)
The Blackhawks have faced life without Patrick Kane for a little while now, and they have done quite well, as a glimpse of their recent games would tell you. However, when playoff time comes, the Blackhawks are expected to “flip the switch”, and no player emulated that mantra more than Patrick Kane.
Kane was on his way to the NHL scoring title, and despite not playing in a month, is still the Blackhawks’ leading scorer, 5 points ahead of Jonathan Toews.
Toews, who has 10 points in his last 9 games, is the person the Blackhawks will look to in Kane’s absence come Playoff time. However, the load must be shouldered by more than one player, and with Patrick Sharp and Andrew Shaw seemingly unable to bear such weight thus far this season, missing Kane might drive the Blackhawks to their doom.
More from Blackhawks News
- Blackhawks vs Flames: Date, Time, Lineup, Betting Odds, More
- Three Takeaways from the Blackhawks’ Win vs Vancouver
- Blackhawks: Why Derek King is the Right Coach moving forward
- Marc-Andre Fleury Carries the Blackhawks to a 4-2 Win vs Seattle
- Instant Reaction: Blackhawks top Kraken for first time in history
Surely, if the Blackhawks survive long enough to allow Kane to return, he will be a huge boost for a team that is already halfway (or more) to the Stanley Cup. However, Kane won’t be playing at 100% initially, and the risk of a long-term injury (or the “s” word) is something that will be in the back of Blackhawks fans’ minds every time they see #88 on the ice.
With three weeks remaining, there is lots left to be seen before the Playoffs get underway. In that time, the Blackhawks could have less to worry about, or far, far more. Only time will tell.
Thanks for reading! For more Blackhawks conversation, follow us on Twitter: @Blackhawk_Up.
More from Blackhawk Up
- Blackhawks: Three Noticeable Improvements in Comeback Win vs Blues
- Blackhawks: Key Takeaways from 3-2 win over the Blues
- Blackhawks: Grading Connor Murphy and a position comparison
- Blackhawks: Shuffling the lines to try and spark offense at 5 on 5
- These Lineup Changes could Solve the Blackhawks’ Scoring Problem