The Chicago Blackhawks defense has looked a lot better this season, but there are still some questions revolving around the blue line.
For the past five years now, the Chicago Blackhawks defense has only gotten worse with time, but this season seems to be the year that changes. Through the first 16 games of the season, the Blackhawks defense has done a relatively good job at times while still relying heavily on their goaltending.
It starts with the influx of new forwards the team added this offseason. With Lucas Wallmark and Mattias Janmark, Chicago added a few new forwards that can defend well in their own end.
The past few seasons, the forwards on the Blackhawks missed out on a lot of assignments in the defensive zone, which ended up costing the team considerably. This season, the forwards are getting involved in their own end to help get the puck out and disrupt the opponent’s offense.
There have been a lot of reason for optimism on the blue line this season. Calvin de Haan looks to be in midseason form and leads the team in blocked shots. He has been great for the team defensively and has even scored a goal along the way.
The younger defensemen are starting to take the next step as well. Seeing Nicolas Beaudin come in and play as well as he has is great, same with Ian Mitchell. Those two rookies are giving Adam Boqvist a run for his money on who the top rookie is, but I am getting ahead of myself. Let’s jump in with the questions.