Chicago Blackhawks: Five reasons for optimism after three bad games

Alex DeBrincat #12, Chicago Blackhawks Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports
Alex DeBrincat #12, Chicago Blackhawks Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports /
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Duncan Keith #2, Chicago Blackhawks
Duncan Keith #2, Chicago Blackhawks Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports /

5. Duncan Keith remains ageless and looks like himself

Keith might be 37 years old now, but that is not slowing him down from leading the team on the ice. As of now, Duncan Keith leads all skaters with 22:15 minutes of ice time on average through the first three games.

The long-time Blackhawks assistant captain has two assists so far this season, one at even strength and one on the power play. Being paired up with Connor Murphy seems to be working out to Duncan Keith’s advantage.

Keith and his partner Connor Murphy combine for three points, nine blocked shots, and four hits. Keith has seven of the blocked shots, a team-best. Willing to sacrifice his body for the win, Keith is doing his best to keep the puck out of the net.

This season Keith might be a minus-three in the plus-minus department, but actually, no player is a plus on this team due to how many goals the roster has given up. All that matters for the long time Blackhawks defenseman is keeping pucks out of his own net, and doing his best to help generate some offense, and he is doing his part.

Keith has registered five shots so far this season, and hopefully, he will be able to score a handful of goals on the power play assuming he takes the top spot away from Adam Boqvist who has struggled so far.

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The only thing Keith needs to work on is staying out of the box as he currently leads the team with six penalty minutes. Considering Keith is the team’s top defenseman, they need him out of the box and on the ice when the team finds themselves shorthanded.

This season might not seem to show any reasons for hope, but seeing players like Keith, de Haan, and Suter shine gives hope for the future of this team. Maybe not this season, but within the next few years, Chicago will be back to being competitive, and it starts with the little things now.