Ladd’s recent Blackhawks contributions were forgettable
The next 2010 Blackhawk to return to Chi-Town was Andrew Ladd this past season at the trade deadline. So venerated was his place in Blackhawks’ history, Marcus Kruger, who had won two Stanley Cups in 2013 and 2015 with the ‘Hawks as opposed to Ladd’s one, surrendered his jersey number so Ladd could keep his traditional No. 16.
Needless to say, Ladd’s comeback tour with the ‘Hawks proved to be uneventful, albeit prematurely ended by the St. Louis Blues in the opening round of the playoffs. Whether Ladd may have had more of an impact with the ‘Hawks if he had been given more time in Chicago is up for debate.
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However what was clear was that Ladd certainly looked lost during most of his brief stint with the ’Hawks, adopting more of a physical game than the offensive-finesse style the Blackhawks needed him to assume as a top-line winger.
Now I’m not saying both Ladd and Versteeg expected to pick up where they left off with the ‘Hawks when they returned to the United Center. After all, they had skated for other teams just as long, if not longer than they had for the Blackhawks when they departed during the 2010 offseason.
Still, I feel it’s safe to assume both Ladd and Versteeg felt the mystic effects, either consciously or subconsciously, of once again becoming part of a team that saw them reach one of the highest, if not the highest watermark in their respective careers.
Next: Brian Campbell