Analysis

Chicago Blackhawks 2016-17 Over/Under: Patrick Kane

By Mario Tirabassi
Dec 6, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane (88) smiles during a stoppage of play against the Winnipeg Jets during the first period at United Center. Blackhawks won 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 6, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane (88) smiles during a stoppage of play against the Winnipeg Jets during the first period at United Center. Blackhawks won 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports /
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As the regular season begins in just a couple of weeks, the Chicago Blackhawks are looking to improve on their early exit last season. Over the next few weeks, Blackhawk Up will give projections for the stats of each player heading into the season, based off the trend of past three seasons, career averages, and potential line-mate projections. 

Patrick Kane is hoping to build off a career-best season

The 2015-16 season was interesting for many different reasons for the Chicago Blackhawks. Most notably, the storylines surrounding star winger Patrick Kane.

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After a tumultuous summer, Kane went on to have a career-best season for the Blackhawks and was named the Hart Memorial Trophy winner as league MVP. Although the Blackhawks didn’t finish the season the way many had hoped last season, Kane was a bright spot and ended up being one of the most fun players to watch throughout the year.

Kane was the only player to score 90-plus points last season, and signs point to him being able to top that same 90-point plateau in the 2016-17 season. Playing on a line with Artemi Panarin and Artem Anisimov for a second season, the Blackhawks’ second line will be the focal point for Chicago offensively again and Kane will be the main piece.

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Factors

Last Three Seasons:

  • 2013-14: 69 GP – 29g, 40a, 60Pts, +7, 19:37 TOI
  • 2014-15: 61 GP – 27g, 37a, 64Pts, +10, 19:51 TOI
  • 2015-16: 82 GP – 46g, 60a, 106Pts, +17, 20:25 TOI

Career Average:

  • 82 Game AVG: 31g, 52a, 83Pts, +8, 19:29 TOI

Potential Linemates:

  • Artemi Panarin – Guaranteed
  • Artem Anisimov – Guaranteed
  • Jonathan Toews – Outside Shot

Projection: 41G, 55A, 96Pts

Kane is, without a doubt, the biggest piece to the success of the Chicago Blachawks in the last three years. Sound the hot-take alarm if you want, but look at last season, 2014-15 and 2013-14: If Kane isn’t playing at the level he is, Chicago doesn’t have a shot at back-to-back Stanley Cup Final appearances (2014), doesn’t win Stanley Cup No. 3 in six years (2015) and doesn’t have a shot at the Stanley Cup Playoffs (2016).

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In 2013-14, if Kane doesn’t have his leg injury end his regular season a month early, he is the highest scorer on the team.

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In 2014-15, besides the Stanley Cup victory, if Kane doesn’t break his collarbone, he could’ve been the NHL MVP at the rate he was playing at the time.

Last season, he was the actual NHL MVP.

There is no denying Kane is in the middle of his prime. No denying he is the biggest name in American hockey right now. Kane is the biggest part of Chicago’s success in 2016-17.

Writer Prediction: Over

Kane surpassed the 40-goal mark for the first time in his career last season. As mentioned before, if he didn’t suffer injuries that ended his seasons early in 2013-14 and 2014-15, Kane could have touched or surpassed the 40-goal mark before.

Can he do it again? Yes. Will he? Probably.

There’s no reason to believe that Panarin will slow down in his second year of NHL experience. Anisimov is healthy and in one of his best playing situations of his career playing between Kane and Panarin.

Everyone’s happy, eh? Keep Kane healthy and out of the tabloids and everything will work out well for everyone involved. Therefore, the production prediction for Patrick Kane is 96 points for the 2016-17 season.

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