Once again, three players on the Chicago Blackhawks have made the Canadian men’s Olympic team. While Brent Seabrook was not chosen, there was a player who finally got the recognition he deserves. To say Patrick Sharp is having a good year might be understating it. Sharp is the hottest scorer in the NHL, a bright spot on the Blackhawks’ as-of-recent struggling offense and the entire year. For Sharp, it’s been a long time coming.
Sharp didn’t even make a senior Canadian international team until 2008 at the IIHF World Championships. Yes, the man who has been playing so well for the Hawks did not make it to an international competition until he was 26. In a way, it shows that Sharp has been a late bloomer. As mentioned in a previous article, Sharp was traded from the Philadelphia Flyers to the Hawks. The Flyers must not have suspected that the recent University of Vermont product was going to do much.
But getting back to today, Sharp has been playing exceptionally well this year. He’s one of the league leaders in points with 46 and is the top goalscorer on the team with 25 (Patrick Kane is the team’s leading scorer with 54 points). Leaving Sharp’s offensive talent was simply too good for Steve Yzerman and Mike Babcock to pass up. And quite simply, it was about time.
Sharp is one of those players who has gotten better as time goes on. While not a player who really got a whole lot of attention early on, Sharp has aged like fine wine (and to some, not just in terms of his skills). To deny his talent and leave him off the roster would have been disastrous for Team Canada.
Now that Patrick Sharp has been named to Team Canada, it’s about time the man has gained some recognition. While Blackhawks fans know of his talents, the international hockey community will finally get a chance to see him. So good job to Steve Yzerman. You made the right choice.