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18 Days of Blackhawks Drafts: Denis Savard (1980)

by Brad Boron / Chicago Blackhawks
Denis Savard, in a Montreal Juniors sweater.

Before the Blackhawks take the podium to announce the 18th overall selection of the 2012 NHL Draft, the Blackhawks Blog takes you through the history of the team's greatest draft picks, and how they spent their time in the Blackhawks sweater.

C Denis Savard - Selected 3rd overall in the 1980 Entry Draft.

When the Montreal Canadiens - perhaps surprisingly - passed on Montreal Juniors standout Denis Savard in favor of center Doug Wickenheiser, the Blackhawks were happy to select him with the third overall pick.

It is unlikely that anyone around the team ever regretted the selection.

In his rookie season, "Savy" shot out of the gate, recording 28 goals and 47 assists, which stood as a Blackhawks rookie record until Patrick Kane tallied 51 assists in his 2007-08 rookie campaign.

Throughout his 881 regular-season games with Chicago, Savard was an offensive force; to this day, the four highest-scoring Blackhawks seasons belong to Savard, including a staggering 131-point year in 1987-88. Savard's 11 hat tricks is third among Blackhawks all-time, behind only Bobby Hull (28) and Stan Mikita (16). Teamed with Steve Larmer and Al Secord, "The Party Line" became the highest-scoring line in franchise history, with 297 points recorded during the 1982-83 season.

In the postseason, Savard was even better, recording 61 goals and 84 assists in 131 playoff games with Chicago.

The Blackhawks retired Savard's no. 18 in 1998, and he was voted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2000. He was named a Blackhawks Ambassador in 2008, and still holds that position.

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