Every four years brings hockey fans across the world bonus hockey, the Winter Olympics. With the way that the 2017-18 season went for the Blackhawks, the fans desperately needed something to help them fill a void in their lives as there is no playoff hockey in Chicago this year. Team USA has selected Patrick Kane to be Captain America for the 2018 Men’s Olympic hockey team.
Patrick Kane named captain of Team USA for Worlds.
— Mark Lazerus (@MarkLazerus) April 9, 2018
He is not the only Blackhawks player on the USA roster this year. In addition to Kane, fans can also find many current and former Blackhawks players on the 2018 Men’s roster such as Alex DeBrincat, Scott Darling, Jordan Oesterle and Connor Murphy who is an Alternate Captain (A) this year. Captain duties are not to be taken lightly, especially in an International setting, and Kane took the ‘C’ and has not looked back since.
Kane and Co. Are Rolling
After being named the team captain, Patrick Kane has gotten to work and has not let up one bit. Through the first three preliminary games of the 2018 International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Men’s World Championship, he has led Team USA to a very impressive 3-0 record which includes defeating Canada in a shootout that ended 5-4, Denmark in a 4-0 shutout, and Germany 3-0 in another shutout. Blackhawks forwards Patrick Kane and Alex DeBrincat are firing on all cylinders, as they both filled up the stat sheet against Germany.
Patrick Kane and Alex DeBrincat combined for two goals and three assists in USA's 3-0 win over Germany. #Blackhawks
— Charlie Roumeliotis (@CRoumeliotis) May 7, 2018
Beating Canada in International play is a huge deal because there is a very tangible rivalry between the two countries on the ice. Canada defeated the U.S. Men’s team in the Gold medal game back in 2010 and they are known for being a perennial powerhouse in Men’s Olympic hockey.
This year, Kane seems to have rediscovered the beautiful form that won him the Hart Trophy back in 2016. In the last game against Germany, he played alongside fellow Blackhawks’ winger Alex DeBrincat on the same line, and the chemistry was obvious to everyone. Their chemistry can be seen here in this play that developed behind the net, as Kane scooped up the puck and dished a perfectly placed pass that resulted in a pretty top-shelf goal by DeBrincat:
— USA Hockey (@usahockey) May 7, 2018
Teasers for the Blackhawks 2018-19 Season
Hey Coach Q, maybe you should unleash this dynamic duo next year. As seen in the video above, a line with DeBrincat and Kane out on the wings in open space is very, very scary for the rest of the competition. Seeing both of these guys work their magic in the 2018 IIHF Men’s Championship tournament reminds me of the electric line combination of Panarin-Anisimov-Kane in the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons — just mentioning that line brings a tear to my eye right now. Speaking of Anisimov, has anybody seen him? I am wondering if I should put out an Amber Alert for him because he did not show up at all last season for the Blackhawks.
In addition, if I was in charge of creating Blackhawks lines, I would maybe throw in somebody like Nick Schmaltz at the center position to play alongside DeBrincat and Kane, because he would be able to keep up with their tempo and plays well on both ends of the ice. Will Hawks coach Joel Quenneville actually give this proposed line a shot though? He would be absolutely crazy not to at least consider it, and here are a few reasons why he should:
— Blackhawks Talk (@NBCSBlackhawks) May 8, 2018
In the NHL, it has been proven that speed kills and a potential line of DeBrincat-Schmaltz-Kane would have more than enough speed and precision to alter gameplans and cause some serious problems for opponents next season.
Team USA has four more games left in the Preliminary round of the IIHF Men’s World Championship:
- Latvia, May 10th
- Korea, May 11th
- Norway, May 13th
- Finland, May 15th
If you are wondering where you can watch Patrick Kane fulfill his duties as Captain America and lead Team USA to victory, the NHL Network is broadcasting all of the games live, so check your local cable provider for more info. Team USA looks like the real deal so far. Let’s see if they can keep their momentum going and bring home the gold.