Draft, Develop, and Be Patient

It takes time to develop a dynasty that is the Chicago Blackhawks. In 2010, the Chicago Blackhawks ended their 52-year Stanley Cup Champion drought against the Philadelphia Flyers. In 2013, the Blackhawks defeated the Boston Bruins for their second Stanley Cup Championship in three years. Now it’s 2015, and the Hawks have won their third Stanley Cup in six years.

The Chicago Blackhawks have definitely reached dynasty status. Winning three Stanley Cup Championships in six years and playing as far as the Conference finals in four of the past six years shows how elite the team is. The evolution into such an elite team is a recognition of patience for a team that didn’t have success just ten years ago.

The Blackhawks have developed as a team ever since 2002 when they drafted Duncan Keith, until now with the acquisitions of Kimmo Timonen and Antoine Vermette. The organization’s patience for the past 13 years is a model that should be replicated by teams around the NHL. Many teams are progressing as they follow a similar model that aims for success:

The Winnipeg Jets are a marquee team to watch after their infamous 2014-15 season. Heading into the 2015-16 season, the Jets are looking to add prospect defenceman Josh Morrisey, who is projected to be a top defenceman when he develops into the NHL star he becomes. The team has strong goaltending depth in Ondrej Pavelec, Michael Hutchinson, Eric Comrie and Connor Hellebuyck. With Nikolaj Ehlers and Nic Petan looking to find a spot offensively, the Jets are looking like a team that will be tough to play against. The patience of their General Manager Kevin Cheveldayoff has paid dividends, and success seems to be right around the corner.

The Edmonton Oilers and Toronto Maple Leafs are two Canadian teams that are building from the bottom in the hopes of reaching league supremacy. Teams should follow the Blackhawks model, where they patiently develop players drafted in the past. Teams should look to have cornerstone players such as Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane, and Duncan Keith who can lead the group in the hopes of winning the Cup. In order to thrive, there should be a full commitment to draft, develop, and be patient.

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