Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Connor Bedard Gives Blackhawks Fans A Glimpse Of His Exciting Future With Competent Teammates

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The NHL offseason is often a time when on-ice highlights are non-existent for most players. That’s far from true for the handful of Blackhawks who have had the honor of representing their respective countries at the IIHF World Championship this week, a list that includes Connor Bedard, Alex Vlasic, Seth Jones, Lukas Reichel, Petr Mrazek, and Philipp Kurashev.

Just three games into the tournament, no player in the tournament has been more impressive than Bedard. He’s already tallied five goals, including four in his first two games. That number is tied with Finland’s Oliver Kapanen as the highest in the tournament, and he’s also tied for the lead with six total points. Perhaps most importantly for Bedard’s biggest haters, he’s +4 in his three games, the highest mark on Team Canada.

Impressive play has become so commonplace for Bedard that he’s even being criticized for not celebrating his goals. During the Czech broadcast of Sunday’s game, announcer Jakub Voracek criticized Bedard for not celebrating, commenting that Bedard not celebrating his goals was more disrespectful of his opponents.

For Chicago hockey fans, Bedard’s standout performance is more than just a chance to break out the popcorn – it’s a glimpse into the future. For the first time since being drafted, Bedard is on a team that is at least competent against the teams it plays against. And, well, you see the result. Bedard proved last season that he’s a superstar and franchise cornerstone, but he’s proving now that he can be even better.

Since the end of the season, much of the focus in Chicago has been on how the franchise can add pieces to help Bedard by adding proven talent. The team is stocked with numerous assets and cap space and could easily turn those into a high-profile trade acquisition or free agent. For now, the Blackhawks’ biggest takeaway is that an infusion of talented stars has to happen more quickly. If Chicago wants to see the same results from Bedard next season as he’s showing at Worlds, look for them to acquire a few new players as quickly as possible.

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