#2 – Tanner Kero
We all know Stanley Cup Championships are won by a team’s lower lines. That being said, while he received a lot of hype last year, Tanner Kero hasn’t really made much of a splash for the Blackhawks and has fallen off most fans’ radars. Still, he’s been there chugging along, and has seemingly made just enough positive contributions to solidify himself a spot in Coach Joel Quenneville’s nightly lineup.
As a young gun, Kero may be playing conservatively to make sure he avoids Coach Q’s notorious doghouse, but if that’s the case, then now is definitely the time he needs to stop holding back if he wants to have a strong playoff showing. With opposing teams matching their top players against the Blackhawks’ top lines, the onus is going to fall on lower line forwards to put goals in the net, which is why it is critical for Kero to find the scoring touch he had in the AHL heading into the post season.