In 2015, the Chicago Blackhawks won their third Stanley Cup in six seasons. Defensemen Duncan Keith was awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy.
During the 2014-15 NHL season, Duncan Keith played in 80 of the Chicago Blackhawks’ 82 games. The assistant captain put up 10 goals and 35 assists for 45 points. 2015 was the third, and last time, so far, where Keith has put up 10-plus goals in a season.
At 31, the defending Norris Trophy winner was trying to help the Blackhawks reach the top of the mountain again, after falling in seven games to the L.A. Kings the year prior, in the Western Conference Finals.
Of all of the players in the NHL, Keith is one of the most competitive players out there. He will do anything it takes to win. Whether it’s losing teeth, getting cut, blocking shots, etc. Keith does not like to lose. His style of play is why “Chicago Runs on Duncan.” It’s not just a catchphrase when it comes to him.
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In 2015, Chicago finished third in the Central Division, which gave them a playoff spot. They played against Nashville in the first round. During that series, Keith had the game-winning goal in Game 1 and in Game 6.
Throughout the first series, Keith had two goals and five assists for seven points. Not bad for a defenseman, especially when those two goals were game-winning goals.
In the second round against Minnesota, Keith took a step back, only taking three points in the Blackhawks four-game sweep. Those points were two assists in Game 1 and another assist in Game 2.
In the Western Conference Finals went to a Game 7 against the Ducks. During that series, Keith had eight assists in seven games, while averaging 32:58 a night on the ice. For those counting at home, Keith had 18 points in 17 games for the Blackhawks.
Chicago met up with the Tampa Bay Lightning in the Stanley Cup Finals. Keith played a little bit less, but that was because these games weren’t ending in double overtime. In six games, Keith averaged 29:46 a night.
He scored the Stanley Cup game-winning goal, finishing the playoffs with 21 points in 23 games. Even though he wasn’t the leading scorer on the Blackhawks, he earned the trophy. While on the ice, the Blackhawks had a plus-minus of plus 16.
Overall, Keith played 715:37 minutes during those 23 playoff games. If you go back and watch half of those games, there’s no denying why Keith earned that trophy. The most important part of that series was the finish.
If Chicago never wins a Stanley Cup again with Keith on the team, he’s had a great career. Not only is he a three-time Stanley Cup champion, but he’s also won two Norris Trophies, he’s a three-time All-Star, and he won the 2015 Conn Smythe Trophy, obviously.