Patrick Sharp, 30, has seen his career blossom ever since landing in Chicago. In 501 career games in the Indian head, Sharp has scored 183 goals while adding 187 assists. The three-time 30 goal scorer has proved his worth to the Blackhawks with his versatility, leadership, and spectacular sniper ability, earning him a five-year contract extension that begins this season.
Last year, Sharp arguably had his best regular season all-around with 33 goals, 36 assists, and led the team with a career best plus-28 in 74 games. In the playoffs he didn’t see much success with only a single goal in six games and really didn’t contribute much else. The last two years he has hovered awfully close to the point per game mark, which has been on an upward trajectory throughout his career. No matter where he ends up, center or wing, he has proved that he can produce at the same level that helped the Blackhawks win the Stanley Cup in 2010.
The only complaint that can be made when it comes to Sharp is his consistency level. He tends to score in bunches throughout the season and dries up at certain times, sometimes the wrong times. He’s not exactly an elite winger, or center, but he does have a very important role on the team that extends outside his production which helps boost his value in Chicago more-so than the rest of the NHL.
At this point Sharp is in the prime of his career, he may never sort out the consistency factor but if he heats up at the right time it could be another special year for Chicago. If not, the team could be in trouble if they are expecting a strong push throughout the post-season.
If the Blackhawks don’t acquire another center, Patrick Sharp should get another opportunity to play in the middle instead of Patrick Kane, but Joel Quenneville has not shown any intentions to do so. Either way he’ll see plenty of time in the top-six and shouldn’t have a big problem scoring 30 goals again if he can remain healthy.
PREDICTION: 78 GAMES | 41 GOALS | 35 ASSISTS | 76 POINTS | PLUS-14
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