Bedard’s return brings a win

The Blackhawks wonder boy, Connor Bedard, has made his awaited return this week after recovering from an injury he sustained on Jan. 5. Like a surge of electricity, Bedard has brought a new energy to a struggling offense and has put an end to their eight game losing streak. 

Connor Bedard was the first overall pick by the Blackhawks in the 2023 NHL draft, and has been the main attraction for the struggling team. At 18-years old, he was the offensive leader of an entire franchise before his untimely injury last month against the New Jersey Devils, where his jaw was broken after a nasty hit delivered by Devils defenseman, Brendan Smith, in the first period. Since then the Hawks have struggled on offense with averaging just over one goal a game. 

Leading up to his return, the Blackhawks were on an ugly stretch. Leading into his debut against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Blackhawks had scored just eight goals over the previous seven games with just one overtime game during that skid. While the Blackhawks weren’t able to capture a win against the Penguins, there were signs that a win wasn’t too far away. After a rough twenty minutes, where Bedard was getting used to the pace of play, he assisted on the only goal the Blackhawks scored. 

On Saturday afternoon, from as early as their morning skate, there was a buzz leading into their game against the Ottawa Senators. The Blackhawks were itching to get on the ice and play. Their energy was obvious, starting the game off with a one goal lead that was set up by a Bedard pass to Kurashev and then the eventual scorer, Nick Foligno. The Senators however, would equalize a few minutes later. 

After a Senators goal gave them a lead in the second, it was Bedard who scored the equalizer. With that goal, he reclaimed the title of leading scorer for the Blackhawks, after being away for five weeks. With just under two minutes left in the game, Dickinson scored while falling down to all but secure their first win in nine games. 

Bedard’s return has given a bright side to what has been a difficult season for the Blackhawks. His eagerness to condition, learn, and get back on the ice has given the coaching staff and the upper management all the information they need to know about how much Bedard wants to win, and how hard he is willing to work to get there. Get ready Chicago, a new era is around the corner. 

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