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Stanley Cup Final

Defencemen power Chicago Blackhawks to NHL's most potent offence

Wednesday, 12.25.2013 / 10:45 AM / News

The Canadian Press

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Defencemen power Chicago Blackhawks to NHL's most potent offence

CHICAGO - The Chicago Blackhawks lead the NHL with 145 goals, and their defencemen are playing a key role in the prolific attack.

Duncan Keith leads all NHL defencemen with 30 assists. Niklas Hjalmarsson is on pace for career highs in goals and assists. Brent Seabrook has three goals and 23 assists after he had 20 points in 47 games last season. Nick Leddy and Johnny Oduya also have provided valuable support on the offence.

It's hard enough for teams to deal with such forwards Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews. Now, when Keith & Co. are coming up and taking aim, the Blackhawks turn into a goaltender's nightmare.

Quote of the Day

That's a really tough thing to play through; when you finally are thrown out there, the game is fast, intense, every single play matters, you've got to find a way to play through that and make smart plays. So it's a huge testament to [Vermette] and some other individuals in our locker room that are putting their own ego, their own wants and needs aside, and are ready for those opportunities when they do come.

— Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews on teammate Antoine Vermette, who returned from being a healthy scratch in Game 3 to score the double-overtime winner in Game 4