Why Don’t You Love Connor Murphy Yet?
Blackhawks fans–take a step back and just look what landed in your lap.
Stop, I said take a step back. That means forget about Niklas Hjalmarsson.
The Blackhawks traded for a 24 year old 6’4 212 pound defenseman in his prime who is under contract for the next five seasons. Connor Murphy played on one of the worst teams in the NHL and still earned a long term deal from them. At $3.85M per season, his contract could turn into one of the best values on the ‘Hawks books in the next few years if he is successful.
It’s hard not to compare him with Hammer but you have to do your best to try. Murphy plays a very different game that brings a lot of good things. He’s extremely physical, he clears his zone well, and plays to the whistle. That kind of grit is something the ‘Hawks have been lacking, especially in the playoffs.
It has to be a shock for him playing for a franchise like Arizona, then being traded to perennial contender like the Blackhawks. His first game at the United Center will most likely send chills through his body, but that extra motivation from our rowdy fan base will get him playing at his highest level.
A lot of people are skeptical about his game, but you have to understand the circumstances that led to the generation of his statistics and his film. You can only do so much as a defenseman on a bad team except try to play responsible hockey and hope your effort make up for the lack of talent on the ice.
I think a lot of people will be surprised with Murphy’s progress and happy that he’s locked up long term.