Ice time tells it all for the Chicago Blackhawks after game one
By Jimmy Lynch
If you watched the Chicago Blackhawks game last night, you probably aren’t feeling too positive about the team right about now.
I do not think anyone expected the Chicago Blackhawks to go to Tampa Bay and dominate play against the Lightning during the first game of the season. However, I think it is safe to assume everyone was hoping for a better effort than we saw in game one.
For the Chicago Blackhawks winning is not going to be everything this coming season. Taking steps in the right direction as a hockey team and improving as a unit is more valuable during a season of rebuilding. However, after game one, the ice time distribution does not make sense.
The Blackhawks’ best players will be called upon a lot this season to take up a lot of ice time, which is expected. However, I did not realize who Jeremy Colliton considered to be his leaders that need to play more during a game.
Check out the ice time distribution after game one of the season.
DeBrincat led forwards in ice time and only put up two shots on goal. Dylan Strome was third amongst forwards and only put one shot on goal. Meanwhile, the player that put up 30 goals last season and was a big part of the Chicago Blackhawks top line had the third least amount of ice time during the game.
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Why in the world did Dominik Kubalik only have 11:30 minutes of ice time last night? Last season it took the ‘Hawks a solid chunk of the season to find out the type of player Kubalik can be, and so he spent the first few months not playing big minutes or on a top line. Why is history repeating itself?
I also think it is interesting that Connor Murphy played a little longer than Duncan Keith in game one. While it was only 20 or so seconds separating these two, Keith has always been the defensemen playing the most for the Blackhawks.
Maybe the Blackhawks defense is getting a new top defenseman in 2020-21 in Murphy. The Blackhawks showed just how much they would rely on their top line to lead the team during game one, but that line fell short.
For the team to be successful, Colliton and company need to do a better job spreading out the ice time. What was your biggest takeaway after game one of the season?