Editorials

3 Chicago Blackhawks Who Need To Produce More On Offense

By Colin Likas
SUNRISE, FL - NOVEMBER 25: Nick Schmaltz
SUNRISE, FL - NOVEMBER 25: Nick Schmaltz /
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Though the Chicago Blackhawks have found their offense in recent weeks, there are still concerns for this team with individual production

Ever since the Chicago Blackhawks’ 3-1 loss to Philadelphia on Nov. 9, the team has found its offensive stroke. Outside of a 2-1 win over Pittsburgh and a 3-2 overtime loss to Tampa Bay, the Blackhawks have tallied four, five, six and four goals in separate games.

This is obviously good news, as the Blackhawks were not only struggling with puck possession, but with converting what chances they did have. Now both of those things have changed for the better.

But that doesn’t mean everyone is scorching-hot on the offensive side. Here are three Blackhawks the team needs more from in the immediate future for success to continue.

Nick Schmaltz

He does have six points in his last five games as part of the second line with Artem Anisimov and Patrick Kane, but after how confidently and strongly he started the season, you’d like more.

Schmaltz has just 11 points in 18 games, including only three goals. It’s not terrible to start a sophomore season this way, it just feels like he should have more.

I think one issue for Schmaltz has been his overreliance on Kane. He prefers to pass the puck to Kane in too many situations, versus trusting his shot and abilities. There are times when angles and defense make this a good choice, but we’ve seen Schmaltz hand off to Kane so many times simply because it’s Kane on the other side.

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The Blackhawks need more production from Schmaltz if he’s going to continue being a positive presence on the second line. And that starts with him shooting more, as his 27 shots tie for 14th on the team.

Ryan Hartman

Hartman has been invisible since the season’s early stretches. He’s been bumped to the bottom six and even healthy scratched. The Blackhawks are still getting some production from their bottom six, but Hartman has not been part of that.

He hasn’t scored since Oct. 28 against Colorado, and seven of his 10 points came in two games. Hartman has shown flashes of being a capable passer and shooter, but we really haven’t seen that for large portions of this season. Having good linemates helps, but I don’t think Hartman is so devoid of talent that the Blackhawks can’t get more from him.

Patrick Sharp

This is the most obvious one, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t true. The Blackhawks are getting close to the point where they need to consider scratching Sharp. He just isn’t bringing much to the table.

Sharp has just four points while playing all 22 of Chicago’s games. He has the lowest point total among any of the Blackhawks who have played in all of the team’s games thus far. And like Hartman, he’s been invisible on the ice. The difference is, Sharp didn’t even have a couple good games.

Next: Blackhawks' Toews Tracker, 22 Games In

And unlike Schmaltz, this isn’t a case of Sharp not getting enough shots off on the bottom six. He has a whopping 50 shots, sixth-most on the club. He’s got a shooting percentage of 4 as a result. Either Sharp needs to start converting more, or he needs to have a seat.

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