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Chicago Blackhawks: Why Dave Bolland Is a Good Fit for the 2nd Line

CHICAGO, IL - MARCH 13:  Dave Bolland #36 of the Chicago Blackhawks shoots the puck against the St. Louis Blues at the United Center on March 13, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. The Blackhawks defeated the Blues 4-3 in a shootout.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Nicole BlumContributor IIIJanuary 27, 2013

There were many uncertainties for the Chicago Blackhawks going into the 2013 NHL season.

And Dave Bolland’s addition to the second line was—but no longer is—a major question.  

We have known Bolland as a rough and tough guy that centers the third line. He’s the one who scores some key goals, gets into a couple fights and then goes unnoticed.

Last season, Bolland scored 19 goals and tallied 18 assists in 76 games. These were decent numbers for a third-liner, although his overall play was like that of his team—streaky.  

But, that was last season.

This year is different. Now that the Blackhawks have had an unbelievable start to the season, it’s time to give some credit to Bolland. The center scored three goals and has four points in five games so far this season.

This is not just a fast start for him. This is the beginning of something promising.

Patrick Sharp and Patrick Kane continue to bring out the best in Dave Bolland. His passing is crisper and his vision sharper; he seems to be in the right places at the right times.

And not only is the second line improving Bolland’s play, but he is also improving the second line. 

The 26-year-old offers a physical playing style. Unlike former second-line center Marcus Kruger—who seems comfortable on the fourth line—Bolland is much more aggressive. He’s ready to fight and deliver big hits to generate momentum.

With the highly skilled Sharp and Kane on the wings, Bolland’s determined nature intensifies the line and also strengthens the chemistry between the three forwards.

In fact, he is already confident in the line's chemistry.

"We all know how each other are and where we're going to be," he said of his line after the Blackhawks' win over the Phoenix Coyotes (via Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune).

With this chemistry, the second line gives the Ontario native an opportunity to make an impact—an impact Bolland has already shown he will make this season.

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