5 Signs That Patrick Sharp Is Ready to Take Over the Stanley Cup Playoffs

Nicole Blum@@nblumNHLContributor IIIMay 11, 2013

5 Signs That Patrick Sharp Is Ready to Take Over the Stanley Cup Playoffs

0 of 5

    Patrick Sharp's name was rarely heard by Chicago Blackhawks fans this season—until now. Plagued with an upper-body injury, Sharp only scored six goals in 28 games played during the shortened season.

    But his play has taken a turn for the better in the playoffs.

    Here are five signs that Patrick Sharp is ready to take over during the Stanley Cup playoffs.

5. Patrick Squared

1 of 5

    What do you get when you multiply Patrick Kane by Patrick Sharp? Patrick squared, and the most potent second line in the NHL

    Kane and Sharp possess a unique chemistry. With 11 points combined in these playoffs, the duo is the most productive unit on the Blackhawks this postseason.

    Playing with one of the most talented wingers in the league is sure to help Sharp own the playoffs.

4. Powering the Power Play

2 of 5

    Even though the Blackhawks have a mediocre power-play conversion rate of 15.4 percent, Patrick Sharp is making the power play a momentum generator.

    No longer are the Hawks losing momentum with a man advantage. 

    With a power-play goal and 22 shots on net in five games, Sharp is putting pressure on the goaltender to make some big stops.

    The Blackhawks can thank Patrick Sharp for keeping the power play afloat.

3. Back to Health

3 of 5

    Patrick Sharp played only 28 games during the already shortened season. Now that he's back from his shoulder injury, it's time for Sharp to try to extend the Hawks' playoff run.

    The Blackhawks went 25-0-3 during the regular season when Sharp was in the lineup. Is it a coincidence that the Blackhawks never lost in regulation when the Ontario native was playing? 

    I think not.

    Sharp's presence on the ice is priceless to the team. He's the guy who will drive the Hawks to the Stanley Cup.

2. It's Time to Remake the Season

4 of 5

    Sharp received some criticism during the regular season. Known for scoring goals, he netted only six in 28 games played.

    This 2013 season was totally unexpected for a player who usually scores around 30 goals in an 82-game season.

    Past criticism is fueling Sharp's desire to improve his play in the playoffs.

    Now the winger has the chance to erase fans' memories of all his post hits, shots whiffed and plain-out misses.

    The playoffs are an opportunity to make his season a memorable one.

1. Sharp Shooter

5 of 5

    I think Patrick Sharp is channeling his 2010-playoffs self—remember his 11 goals and 11 assists?—this postseason. Sharp has five goals and one assist in five games played. 

    Plus he's shooting with the accuracy he's known for. Five goals on 22 shots is a pretty good conversion rate.

    Patrick Kane talked highly of Patrick Sharp after the Blackhawks' 3-1 win over the Minnesota Wild on May 3 (via Scott Powers ESPNChicago.com):

    He’s a big part to the lineup. He’s a guy who can score goals. He’s had the knack for scoring goals ever since I’ve come to this team. Nice to have that contribution from Sharpie—something we expect from him, too.

    It's nice to see Sharp living up to his expectations.