All Time Blackhawks

Chicago Blackhawks: Michal Rozsival Days Until Banner Raising

By Keith Schultz

We had so much fun doing our Countdown to Faceoff series last season that we decided to do it again.  In case you’re new to the series, we’ll do a roster preview as we count down the days until the Chicago Blackhawks raise their 6th Stanley Cup Banner on October 7th season opener against the New York Rangers.

Michal Rozsival‘s last season with the Chicago Blackhawks was this past season, and man was it a tough one to watch. Rozsival was probably the most despised player on the ice most nights for the Blackhawks with many like myself wondering why Stan Bowman ever signed the veteran defenseman to a 2 year contract after the 2013 Stanley Cup Championship.

Rozsival looked to be a superstar after his injury in Game #4 of the Western Conference Semi-Final round. Rozsival’s replacement such as David Rundblad and Kyle Cumiskey struggled mightily trying to fill the skates of Rozsival during the Western Conference Finals and Stanley Cup Final.  Rozsival looked to be a superstar defenseman instead of the weakest link.

In 2013 Rozsival was a very solid puck possession defenseman for Joel Quenneville and he became one of his favorites. The Blackhawks defense was very good because their third pairing was better than most other teams with Rozsival holding down the fort.  Rozsival ended his time as a 2-time Stanley Cup Champion, and you can’t end a 4 year stint with the franchise much better than that.

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There have been quite a few #32’s in Chicago Blackhawks history, here are some interesting stats about the #32.

  • It has been worn by 21 different players since 1984
  • There have been at least four seasons when more than one person wore the number (and two seasons where it was worn by three different players)
  • It was worn the longest by Steve Thomas (1988-1992; 2002-2003)
  • It has been a part of the Blackhawks’ two most recent Stanley Cup Championship teams
  • Related to the point above, it has been worn by two current Blackhawks: Kris Versteeg (who wore it from 2008-2010 and now wears 23) and currently by Michal Rozsival (who has worn it since he joined the team in 2012; he also wore the number for the Coyotes in 2011 and 2012)

The most ironic thing about the #32 is that it will go back to Kris Versteeg who has worn the #23 in his second stint with the team. Hopefully Versteeg will return to playing the way he did when he wore #32 in 2008-2010 if he doesn’t get traded before the season starts!

Only 32 short days left until opening night!

Next: Crawford's New Gear

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