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3 Years later the Chicago Blackhawks still miss Marian Hossa

CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 15: Marian Hossa #81 of the Chicago Blackhawks moves to shoot under pressure from Roman Josi #59 of the Nashville Predators in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2017 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the United Center on April 15, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. The Predators defeated the Blackhawks 5-0. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 15: Marian Hossa #81 of the Chicago Blackhawks moves to shoot under pressure from Roman Josi #59 of the Nashville Predators in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2017 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the United Center on April 15, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. The Predators defeated the Blackhawks 5-0. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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Marian Hossa was the backbone of the Chicago Blackhawks during their championships. He was the missing link that kickstarted the Blackhawks playoff dominance, and since he has left the NHL the Blackhawks have not been the same.

Stan Bowman needs to take a lot of blame for the Chicago Blackhawks fall, but he is not the only reason the team fell so quickly from championship hunting to missing the playoffs.

In Marian Hossa’s final season he put up 26 goals and 19 assists. Those were great numbers from the then 38-year-old forward. He also was great in his own end and registered 47 takeaways. I think that the Blackhawks are still missing Hossa.

Hossa was great with Jonathan Toews. The two played a similar style of play, and since Hossa left the team that right-wing position has seen a slew of players come in and try to take the ropes. No player has fit really perfectly yet, and the lack of Hossa called the Blackhawks to trade for Brandon Saad.

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Brandon Saad is a power forward with great skill both with the puck and on the back-check. For a while, the Blackhawks thought of him as a mini Hossa ready to take the league by storm.

Even with Saad in the lineup, I believe the Blackhawks are still missing Hossa. It’s sad that we are never going to see him play again. However, at the same time, it is no coincidence that Hossa leaving the lineup went hand in hand with the Blackhawks leading the playoff picture. Hossa spent 534 games with the Chicago Blackhawks, I wish we could have spent another 100 or 200 with the team.

The question that is going to need to be answered soon is whether or not 81 is going to hang in the rafters in Chicago. It’s sad that it is some of the most interesting things we get to be excited about, but hey that is the price of winning!

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