Davidson on King, Duncan Keith Returns to the UC, Hjalmarsson Legacy Night, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

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Davidson on King, Duncan Keith Returns to the UC, Hjalmarsson Legacy Night, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

Chicago Blackhawks

We’ve got a game tonight, Blackhawks fans! After three eventful days off for the Blackhawks, they’ll play host to the Edmonton Oilers tonight at the United Center and welcome back two all-time great defensemen in Duncan Keith and Niklas Hjalmarsson.

•   Duncan Keith will skate his first game at the United Center in a road sweater for the Edmonton Oilers after the future Hall of Famer called Chicago home for 16 seasons. His Oilers teammates made sure to give him a special entrance yesterday afternoon when Edmonton arrived at the United Center for practice.

https://twitter.com/EdmontonOilers/status/1499108008348979202?s=20&t=6HzsfO0kzK-6S2R-AYsP2g

•   Keith logged 639 points in 1,228 games, playing an iron-man style of hockey for much of his 16-season tenure with the Chicago Blackhawks and a critical role in the team’s three Stanley Cup Championships of the modern era. Remember when Duncan Keith took a puck to the mouth and lost seven teeth but returned to the game after stuffing his mouth with gauze?

•   Only Stan Mikita has played more games in a Blackhawks sweater than Duncan Keith. Doug Wilson is the only Blackhawks defenseman with more points than Duncan Keith. Three Stanley Cups, two Norris Trophies, two Olympic gold medals, and a Conn Smythe to boot, and you have a resume that will end with Keith’s No. 2 hanging in the rafters of the United Center one day. With all due respect to Doug Wilson, It’ll be tough to make a case against Duncan Keith, the most outstanding defenseman in franchise history.

•   Speaking of all-time great Blackhawks defenseman, Duncan Keith will be present tonight when the Blackhawks honor his long-time teammate Niklas Hjalmarsson.

•   Niklas Hjalmarsson called Chicago home for 10 seasons before he was dealt to Arizona in one of Stan Bowman’s worst trades (on a long list of them) of his tenure at the helm of the Blackhawks. In his ten seasons, the Hammer scored 143 points in a Blackhawks sweater and was a crucial cog in the Blackhawks’ three Stanley Cup Championships like his former blue line mate Duncan Keith.

•   Kyle Davidson continued his media availability with a nearly 40-minute Q&A with the local media on Wednesday afternoon, and he shed a little bit of light on Derek King’s future outlook with the club, saying that King is “definitely a viable candidate” to be the permanent head coach of the Blackhawks.

•   “He is definitely a viable candidate moving forward,” Davidson confirmed. “Going back, he was someone that — I liked that he knew a lot of the younger players that were on the team and that could come into the team over the course of the year. He brought that familiarity to some extent. But he wasn’t already in the room. I think that was something key I wanted to bring in, someone to head that coaching staff that wasn’t in the room. It’s just kind of a new voice rather than someone who just kind of moves laterally and brings just a new perspective to a room that I think needed a new voice, needed a new motivator.”

•   King said after practice Wednesday that he has not yet spoken with Davidson regarding his future behind the bench in Chicago, and he’s taking a wait-and-see approach to the matter at this point.

•   It sure seems like Patrick Kane wants to be in Chicago beyond next season; rebuild be damned.

•   ICYMI:

•   Eli is spitting facts over at BN Bulls regarding the lessons to be learned for a talented team on their way to a playoff appearance this spring:

•   Same, Ryan. Same.

•   That’s it for today!



Author: Patrick K. Flowers

Patrick is the Lead NFL Writer at Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @PatrickKFlowers.