Seth Jones Speaks: Team USA Nod, Preseason Struggles, More

To say that Seth Jones has had an idilic start to his Blackhawks career would be false. Getting used to a new defensive system and new defensive partners, who are all also getting used to new defensive partners, has been a struggle. So far through the preseason, Jones has yet to standout as the clear No. 1 defenseman that the Blackhawks are hoping and paying him to be. With that said, this is still the preseason, where getting the rust off the skates and working out the miscommunications and misreads is supposed to happen. When the game start to matter, all bets are off and Chicago is expecting to see the 2017-18 version of Seth Jones again.

But don’t let all that stop Blackhawks General Manager and President of Hockey Operations Stan Bowman, who is serving as the U.S. Men’s Team General Manager for the 2022 Winter Olympics, from picking Jones as one of his three preliminary roster picks for the Olympic squad, guaranteeing him a roster spot. Jones spoke to the media today following the roster announcement, which will be his first opportunity to play for Team USA in the Winter Olympics.

Yeah I would say if Jones is picked to make the team, Bowman is for sure 100% going to pick Alex DeBrincat for the squad, as well. With the NHL set to return to the Olympics after missing the 2018 Winter Games, a year in which Jones would have likely also made the Team USA roster, Jones spoke about being able to live-out a dream of his to represent the U.S. on the biggest stage for international Hockey.

Jones and Kane will be anchoring a Team USA group looking to rebound from their disappointing 2014 result, where they lost in the Bronze Medal game. Not counting the 2018 result, since it wasn’t a team made of NHL-caliber players, unlike most of what Team Russia’s squad was, which won Men’s Gold in 2018.

Jones’ start to his tenure with the Blackhawks has been spotty at best through the preseason. Again, he’s one of a handful of defensemen in the Blackhawks’ “new look” blue-line that are still getting used to new teammates. One of which is Seth’s own younger brother, Caleb. But for Jones, the kinks need to be worked out fast if he is going to live up to the massive eight-year, $9.5M AAV extension he signed with the Blackhawks.

At least he is aware of it.

Jones and the Blackhawks have two more preseason games to play against the Minnesota Wild. One on the road on Thursday night and the preseason finale at home on Saturday night. After that, it’s the real deal as the regular season begins for Chicago on October 13th, on the road against the Colorado Avalanche. Talk about a trial by fire game.

written by

Mario Tirabassi is a writer for Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Mario_Tirabassi.

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