On Day of our 25 Chicago Blackhawks in 25 Days series, we focus on defenseman Connor Murphy.
In the summer of 2017, the Chicago Blackhawks traded two big names in Niklas Hjalmarsson and Artemi Panarin. Those moves brought a few different players to the Blackhawks.
Brandon Saad returned to the team, and a new face joined them from Arizona, Connor Murphy. Let’s highlight him today!
Player Spotlight: Connor Murphy
Yesterday, we highlighted a defenseman that was slow and played with a heavy offensive style in Olli Maatta.
Today, we are highlighting a different kind of defenseman. One whom has found a home in Chicago playing in the defensive zone.
Connor Murphy has averaged 17:34 minutes of ice time per game with the Chicago Blackhawks. Over the last two seasons, Murphy has had 192 blocked shots and dished out 257 hits.
Murphy is one of the biggest defenseman on the ‘Hawks blue line and he uses that size to his advantage on the ice.
Connor Murphy is no Niklas Hjalmarsson and that is alright. Murphy has a style of play that I think will benefit the Blackhawks this season.
Murphy is still relatively young. He is only 26 years old and has already played 386 games in the NHL. When we look at his career stats, you can see where his game is trending.
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Murphy’s time on the ice hit an all-time high with the Blackhawks last season, when he averaged 19:29 minutes per game.
Another interesting component about Murphy’s play is where he starts his draws. Connor Murphy started from the defensive zone face-off 61.2% of the time last year. That is his highest defensive zone percentage throughout his entire career.
The Chicago Blackhawks are starting to trust Murphy more and more. To me, I think that Connor Murphy might be a Blackhawk that has not shown his full potential yet.
Murphy can really be something for the Blackhawks, as long as he keeps trending in the right direction. In just 5 days, Connor Murphy will have a chance to prove himself.