Chicago Blackhawks forward Bryan Bickell has become a prominent figure during the Stanley Cup Playoffs, taking on a key offensive role for a team seeking to win its second championship in four seasons.
Bickell, 27, scored eight goals over the first three rounds of the Stanley Cup Playoffs -- one fewer than he had in 48 regular-season games. In the Western Conference Final, Bickell scored goals in three consecutive games, then added a pair of assists in the clinching Game 5 win against the Los Angeles Kings.
Bickell was shut out through the first three games in the Stanley Cup Final, but he came through with two assists in Game 4 on Wednesday as the Blackhawks beat the Boston Bruins 6-5 to tie the best-of-7 series at 2-2.
He has been gracious enough to agree to keep a player blog that will appear on NHL.com throughout the series against Boston.
In his latest entry, Bickell writes about how he got his start in hockey:
CHICAGO -- With the extra day off in between Games 4 and 5, I figured it would be a good time to actually introduce myself to all the readers in the proper way by giving my backstory for how I got into hockey and how I got to the National Hockey League.
I grew up in Orono, Ontario, and like most kids I wanted to learn how to play hockey. But when I was 4 years old my parents said they wanted me to learn how to skate first. They got me into doing what we call CanSkate, which is a learn-to-skate program.