Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Frank Nazar Just Proved Why The Blackhawks’ Offense Is BACK

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When the Blackhawks announced Saturday that they would be signing top prospect Frank Nazar, burning the first year of his entry-level contract for just three games, the move shocked just about everyone. While signing Nazar has a few benefits, like making his second contract less expensive down the road, the decision still seemed foolish. It gave the Blackhawks one less year of control over Nazar’s player rights and also put him on the same financial timeline as Connor Bedard, Kevin Korchinski, and Ethan Del Mastro, representing a GM’s nightmare in the summer of 2026.

However, in just the first period with Nazar at the United Center, the young forward revealed a hidden benefit to his unexpected presence on the team: morale. Because, even if it’s just a glimpse, Nazar is showing Blackhawks fans why the future is still bright in Chicago.

Starting on the third attacking line with Jason Dickinson and Joey Anderson, Nazar was tasked with taking the opening draw, which he easily won. He won 55 percent of his faceoffs at Michigan in a tough Big Ten Conference, so for that skill to translate to the game’s top level would be huge for a Blackhawks team that ranks 30th in the NHL in faceoff win percentage.

Nazar further proved his importance to his new team throughout the first period, clearly standing out on both ends of the ice. Even though Chicago only found two shots on goal in the opening frame, the rookie put his team in front in his first career shot in his first career game.

It’s important not to overreact to one goal, but so far in his first career game, Nazar has looked as comfortable as any rookie can. He was expected to be polished coming in after his impressive season with the Wolverines, but he’s certainly giving fans a more positive outlook going forward to next year. Nazar wasted no time proving that the future is bright, and the future is now.

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