Patrick Kane has been leading the Chicago Blackhawks ever since getting drafted first overall in 2007. Let’s talk about what fans should expect from him this season.
Patrick Kane is still going to be leading the Blackhawks in 2021-22.
Even though the team went out and added different players to help spruce up the lineup, Kane is still the guy with this team, and he will be for the next handful of seasons. Last season Kane put up 66 points in 56 games.
The crazy thing is that it was a pretty quiet season for Kane. So during the course of a full 82 game season where those 66 points would have translated to 97, it is amazing how quietly Kane did that.
He had his fair share of milestones to accomplish last year. From scoring his 400th goal or playing in his 1000th NHL game, it was a pretty good year for Kane. Chances are next year could be even better.
It took some time for Jeremy Colliton to settle in on Kane playing with Alex DeBrincat, and the two had a long rotation of centers so next year with a consistent line and one of the next young talents of the game in Kirby Dach centering things the sky is the limit for Kane.
Stats from the past:
Keys to success:
1 Power Play Goals
Kane had just three power-play goals last season. In previous years that number has been closer to eight or nine. Kane is a great playmaker, that is why his total number of assists is always so amazing, but he also has a terrific shot that needs to be used next year.
2. Holding Onto The Puck
Believe it or not, last season Kane had his second-worst season when it comes to giveaways, and yet it was one of the shortest seasons he played. Kane coughed the puck up 45 times last year, and while maybe that is expected when you are playing against the top opponents every night, it cannot become the norm for Kane.
Chicago wants to have the puck when Kane is on the ice, maintaining puck possession is going to be big this season with the team in place.
3. Helping His Linemates
Kane will most likely be paired up with Alex DeBrincat and Kirby Dach. No complaints here as that has the potential to be a great line on paper, but that is the thing. It is on paper. It is up to Kane and company to make that line successful this coming season.
Kane is going to be tasked with having a good year while also helping to get the next generation of superstars in DeBrincat and Dach up to speed with what it takes to be a top elite player in the league. No matter the point total Kane has this season if Dach and DeBrincat have career years that is a win for Kane.
Kane’s icetime will be down from last year – I think with all the different additions the team had Kane’s icetime will be down he averaged over 22 minutes a night, his second-highest total in his career.
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For the success of the team, and the preservation of his career for many more years to come I think Chicago would be better off scaling back that time by even two or three minutes to help give some other players a chance and allowing him to stay healthy a little longer.