Since winning the Calder Trophy with 72 points in 2007-08, Patrick Kane has stood out as one of the league’s top players. He has averaged around a point-per-game and along with Jonathan Toews, has led the Blackhawks to a pair of Stanley Cup championships.
The expectations put on the Kane only increased though after he signed an eight-year, $84 million contract that is projected to put him in a tie with Toews for the league’s highest cap hit, starting in 2015-16.
“He knows expectations are real but he loves that challenge,” Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville told CSN Chicago. “You can see every single year Kaner comes into training camp and there’s another level to his game and to his approach and involvement to being a better person and a better individual.
“I just saw him the other day; I see another step. He’s got great progress to his career.”
One honor that has alluded Kane thus far is the Hart Trophy. He looked like a serious candidate for it early in the 2013-14 season when he scored 23 goals and 53 points in 43 contests, but he slowed down in the second half of the campaign and his chances were completely dashed when he suffered a leg injury in March. He was strong in the postseason though with eight goals and 20 points, including four game-winning goals, in 19 games.