Kris Versteeg: The Chicago Blackhawks' Most Underrated Player

Craig NuzzoCorrespondent INovember 11, 2008

Ironically, my most underrated Blackhawk pick was drafted 134th overall in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft by the Boston Bruins.

From there, Kris Versteeg played for the Providence Bruins in the AHL, until he was traded, along with a conditional draft pick, to the Chicago Blackhawks for Bradon Bochenski.

Versteeg has been compared to Patrick Kane, and both have proved that size doesn't matter in the NHL.

Versteeg has earned 12 points so far this year, ranked fourth on the 'Hawks roster and second amongst rookies in the NHL.

I wouldn't rule out Versteeg following Kane's lead, either. A back-to-back Calder Trophy in Chicago isn't too far out of the ordinary.

According to an article from the Chicago Sun-Times, Versteeg has made a believer of new 'Hawks coach Joel Quenneville:

"From where he was at the start of the summer to today shows how much he's capable of," Quenneville said. "He's a young kid with a good personality in the way he comes to the rink. He's go a lot of energy, good speed, good patience and vision with the puck. And playing with two good players complements his game."

Last year at this time, Versteeg was preparing for a game with the Rockford IceHogs. Now, he practices with NHL's Chicago Blackhawks, and finds himself in the first line with star players like Kane and Jonathon Toews.

Everyone seems to talk about Kane, Toews, Martin Havlat, Patrick Sharp, Duncan Keith, Brian Campbell, and even Dustin Byfuglien.

Where's Kris Versteeg's name on that list?

It's not too long until the "Hawk Quarters" in downtown Chicago, IL will have No. 32 jerseys shown in their window.