I have a new project for this Blackhawks season: 100 Games, 100 Players! What I will be doing is after each of the first 100 Blackhawks I will be sharing my top 100 Blackhawks players of all-time by jersey number.
And hockey is back. The ceremony before tonight's Blackhawks-Capitals game was great, and I'm sure all non-Hawks fans hated it as much as I loved it. Great video montage, and a slow but still well-performed on-ice ceremony held by Eddie Olczyk. The game was quite sloppy, but still very exciting and fun to watch. Most importantly, the Blackhawks are 1-0.
Onto my new tradition for this year. With tonight being the first game of the regular season, I will be sharing my pick for the best Blackhawks player of all-time to wear number one.
Number 1: Glenn Hall
This pick could not have been much easier. Hall is arguably the best Blackhawks goalie of all-time, and was a true innovator of the game. He wass also notorious for his toughness and dedication to the game. Hall won the Calder Trophy for rookie of the year with the Detroit Red Wings in 1956, but was traded after the next season to the Chicago Blackhawks. He led the team to a Stanley Cup championship in 1961. He continued to have an incredible career, which resulted in 13 All-Star Game appearances, 3 Vezina Trophies for top goaltender, a Conn Smythe Trophy for playoff MVP, and three Stanley Cup rings (1952 as a backup with the Red Wings, 1961 with the Blackhawks and 1989 as a goalie coach with the Calgary Flames). Ultimately Hall was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1975. Hall's name has riddled the NHL record book, and still hold the record for consecutive starts by a goaltender (502).
No one has ever accomplished nearly as much as Glenn Hall has in the #1 Indian Headed sweater. Blackhawks goaltending greats Eddie Belfour and Tony Esposito wore #1 at some time for the Hawks, but are much better known for numbers 30 and 35, respectively.
Do you agree with my choice? Is there another Blackhawks number 1 I should have mentioned? Let me know!
Photo Credit: Sports Illustrated, hockeygoalies.org