Power play key to Patrick Kane’s chances for scoring title
BY MARK LAZERUS Staff Reporter October 1, 2013 9:25PM
Updated: November 3, 2013 6:29AM
Patrick Kane finished five points behind the Tampa Bay Lightning’s Martin St. Louis in the scoring race last season, posting 23 goals and 32 assists in 47 games.
Coach Joel Quenneville said he thinks his star right wing is a strong candidate to bring home the Art Ross Trophy this time around — assuming the Blackhawks can snap out of their baffling two-year slump on the power play, that is.
‘‘Perennially, he’s up there at the top of the league,’’ Quenneville said. ‘‘If you look back the last couple of years, our power play hasn’t been as good as it could be — or should be or is going to be. So let’s hope that it’s great this year. If our power play is great, he’ll be a big part of that. I think his numbers would be reflected near the top.’’
Kane, who scored in the first period of the season opener Tuesday against the Washington Capitals, said the scoring title isn’t high on his list of priorities. Not this early, at least.
‘‘I don’t know if you think about it right now,’’ Kane said. ‘‘I think it’s something that obviously you would love to do, and it would be pretty special to do. But I think right now you’re focused on getting yourself off to a good start in the season and see where it goes from there. I think everyone would love to win a scoring title.’’
Troy Brouwer made his second appearance at the United Center as a member of the Washington Capitals. Brouwer, a 22-goal scorer for the Hawks in their 2009-10 championship season, said he’d have ‘‘mixed emotions’’ being present for the the banner-raising ceremony Tuesday.
‘‘I’m happy for the guys here that I played with and happy for the city,’’ Brouwer said. ‘‘But at the same point, [I’m] jealous. I want to be raising a banner in Washington. And hopefully with the Cup being here and guys being able to see what the celebration is like and how it is to win it and how your city embraces you, that can light a fire under us and [we can] have a good start and hopefully win it ourselves
As expected, Marian Hossa and Michal Handzus, neither of whom played during the preseason, played in the opener. Jimmy Hayes played right wing on the third line, leaving Ben Smith scratched. Defensemen Michael Kostka and Sheldon Brookbank also were healthy scratches.