Editorials

Chicago Blackhawks’ Three Players Who Have Stepped Up

By Tim Lively
Dec 11, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks goalie Scott Darling (right) is congratulated by right wing Marian Hossa (left) and defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson (center) following the third period against the Dallas Stars at the United Center. Chicago won 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 11, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks goalie Scott Darling (right) is congratulated by right wing Marian Hossa (left) and defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson (center) following the third period against the Dallas Stars at the United Center. Chicago won 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports /
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Nov 25, 2016; Anaheim, CA, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Marian Hossa (81) moves the puck down ice against the Anaheim Ducks during the third period at Honda Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

Marian Hossa (and the Triple H Line)

Perhaps no one on the Blackhawks miss Brandon Saad and Patrick Sharp more than Marian Hossa. In Saad and Sharp, Hossa had a proven winger to help him flank center Jonathan Toews. In their absence, Hossa’s output suffered noticeably last year, so much so that he began the 2016-2017 campaign bouncing around lower lines as a proverbial orphan. Then Hoss landed on the same line as Ryan Hartman and Vincent Hinostroza, and the rest as they say, was history.

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Hossa’s recent renaissance in the wake of Toews’ absence has by far provided the most glue to hold the ‘Hawks together, and while Hoss’ three goals in the past five games are certainly a testament to his seemingly ageless abilities, he certainly couldn’t have done it without his line mates in Hartman and Hinostroza.

It really makes sense when you look at it. For many years, Hossa has had to play second fiddle as a winger for Toews, and while he experienced success, it was still ultimately Toews’ line; fashioned around his strengths and style of offense.

Now with Hartman and Hinostroza, Hoss has two young, talented, and hungry forwards he can mold in his own playing style. While Hartman and Hinostroza aren’t necessarily inking up the stat sheet, their aggressive, two-way play under Hossa’s influence has been paramount and has generated many-a-scoring opportunities.

Next: Blackhawks Roundtable: Trades And Retiring Numbers

While it’s anyone’s guess what will happen to this line once Toews returns, until then the Triple H line has a golden opportunity each game to further establish their already very promising chemistry.

FOR THE DAGGER!

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