We are entering the final month of our countdown of the greatest Chicago Blackhawks in franchise history, and today we arrive at a player that hoisted the Stanley Cup while playing with the Hawks.
The story of Kenny Wharram ends sadly due to illness, He was forced into retirement in 1969 due to a virus that attacked the muscles around his heart. Wharram was coming off a 30 goal season and was only 35 years old when he skated for the final time with the Blackhawks.
The great story of Wharram begins in the 1950’s when he was a short fast shifty skater that made the Chicago Blackhawks team. He made the team because of that speed, and he was a very accurate shot with him always ending up in the Top 10 of the NHL for accuracy.
His game didn’t really turn around until he was teamed up with the young Stan Mikita and Abe McDonald to form the legendary Scooter Line. I must say there is a part of me that misses every line getting named like they did back in the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s. Today we get some attempts on Twitter for a line name, but it seems more sarcastic than real.
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The great thing about Mikita for Wharram is that it slowed the game down enough that he was able to use that accurate shot to the best of his advantage, and he put up some impressive numbers during that era of the 60’s.
Wharram was on the wing as a great helper to Mikita as he won back to back Art Ross and Hart trophies while averaging 30 goals a season during that stretch.
Of course, Wharram’s greatest accomplishment was in the 1961 season when him and all of the young Blackhawks superstars to be won the Stanley Cup for the first time since 1938. It really is amazing that they only were able to win one Cup with all of that talent on the roster.
Wharram was a solid player whose career was cut short!
Only 30 more days until the Blackhawks are back on the ice!