When we start leaving everything that went wrong during the Chicago Blackhawks 2017-18 season, it’s time to explore some of the gray areas between up and down that formed this hockey campaign.
It’s easy to replace a fan of fans, but it was a task that Murphy saddled when he joined the Blackhawks after the trade in 2017, which sent Niklas Hjalmarsson to the Arizona Coyotes.
And the early profit from the trade was less than expected, and Murphy scraped the trainer Joel Quenneville several times in the first few months of the season.
But after this rough start, Murphy seemed to find his footing on the blue line of Chicago and eventually got some of the best indicators of possession of the whole body of Blackhawks.
Murphy’s name was also not on the Blackhawks list, which appeared in the top 25 Natural Stat Trick to receive the high dangers within 60 minutes mentioned in this article. The Murphy index of 11.16 was only surpassed in Chicago by small samples from Hillman and Kempny.
If there was an area in which Murphy fought, it was to pull the puck out of its end. As this chart shows from CJ Turtoro, Murphy had 7.06 unsuccessful zone exits in 60 minutes, behind only 8.08 Brent Seabrook for the worst rating in the team. It is worth noting that these data cover only the first 39 games of the NHL season, and all tests on the eyes showed that Murphy has become much better in the second half of the season.
Since the comparisons with Hjalmarsson will always occur with the above-mentioned trade, it is worth noting that the amount of possession of Hjalmarsson was worse than that of Murphy, with 47.1% of CF, which is 4.1% lower than the norm of the Arizona team. The frequency of unsuccessful outputs of the Hjalmars zone was even worse at about 7.75 in 60 minutes. Only six points divided their two teams in the standings.
Murphy turned 25 at the end of March, so he is still very blooming. A pessimist will point to this age and say that with the 334 NHL games in his career, Murphy may already have reached his professional ceiling. The optimist will assume that he played 258 of these games for the horrible Coyotes franchise, and his improved game in the second half of this season could become the norm for Murphy’s remaining time with the team. There is a lot of room for gray.
One particular part of Murphy’s future looks quite interesting in Chicago, and this is his late season associated with Gustafson. Murphy and Gustafsson spent just under 137 minutes of flat ice together, placing 57.34% CF% according to Natural Stat Trick. All of their ownership indicators were in black, and this connection began in the offensive zone in just 49.45% of cases.
In the coming months, there are many other positions in the lineup, and this can not be a shuffle that can occur after the Stanley Cup playoffs are completed, and the trading market selects a backup. But the beginning of the next season with a single D-pairing consisting of Gustafsson and Murphy is definitely worth a different look considering how well they showed themselves in partnership in the last weeks of the 2017-18 season.