On June 22, 2007, with the first overall pick in the NHL Entry Draft, the Chicago Blackhawks selected Patrick Kane. And neither have looked back since.
To say drafting Patrick Kane worked out well for the Chicago Blackhawks would be a gross understatement. Let’s take a look at what he’s done for this club, after joining it 13 years ago today, to help them overcome decades of failure.
Kane got right into the action within the first season after being drafted, playing all 82 contests throughout the 2007-08 schedule.
He racked up 21 goals and 51 assists, for a 72 point season, and was awarded the Calder Memorial Trophy as the NHL’s rookie of the year.
Back in 2007-08, this was still a young team trying to find a successful way to work together towards the ultimate goal. Most of their stars that have since become household names were still under 25 years old at that time.
Kane (19) played alongside teammates like Jonathan Toews (19), Niklas Hjalmarsson (20), Bryan Bickell (21), Kris Versteeg (21), Dave Bolland (21), Troy Brouwer (22), Andrew Ladd (22), Brent Seabrook (22), Dustin Byfuglien (22), and Duncan Keith (24).
It’s easy to look back and see that this was a team on the brink of success. Adding Kane into their mix was a more important ingredient than anyone could have anticipated at the time.
They did not make it into the playoffs in his first year, but it wouldn’t be much longer until the team’s storyline began to shift with Kane becoming a main character throughout each chapter.