This is a guest blog by Courtney Gordner. Courtney is a blogger with a passion for all things sports and hockey! Connect with her on Google+.
Just a week after the Chicago Blackhawks won the National Hockey League (NHL) Stanley Cup, star player Dave Bolland was traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs. During the Stanley Cup finals, Bolland scored the final winning goal in Game 6, securing the Blackhawks’ second championship in the last four seasons. Shortly after that, the Blackhawks traded him for three draft picks: 51, 117 and a final one to be determined in 2014.
Bolland joined the NHL shortly after playing for the Greater Toronto Hockey League in 2002. Instead of pursuing another type of career in Canada, such as working for a company like poolguardusa.com or a local accounting firm, he became a star hockey player. He first began his hockey playing career in Mimico Arena, a local arena in Queensway, Canada. The professional Canadian ice hockey player then went on to play for the Toronto Red Wings before being chosen by the Chicago Blackhawks in 2004. He remained with the Blackhawks until 2013 when he was traded for the Toronto Maple Leafs during the NHL Entry Draft.
Bolland is nicknamed “The Rat” because he is able to get under the skin of his opponents, something that can make all the difference in a tight game. His awards include the Jim Mahon Memorial Trophy in 2006. He was also a Stanley Cup Champion in 2010 and 2013, and made the aforementioned winning goal score of the Stanley Cup in 2013.
Two of the star players of the 2013 Stanley Cup were Bolland and Bryan Bickell. While Bryan Bickell is remaining with the Chicago Blackhawks, Bolland has officially joined the Toronto Maple Leafs team. After being traded to the Toronto team, Bickell was able to sign a four-year deal with the Blackhawks. He is now eligible to be an unrestricted free agency, even with his sprained right knee. During the Stanley Cup, Bolland scored the winning goal just 17 seconds after the tying goal, giving Chicago the 3-2 win and the Stanley Cup for 2013.
His history with the NHL and the Blackhawks is stable and reliable. He has been a great defensive center over several seasons, minus the first-round series earlier this year because of an injury, causing him to miss a game against Minnesota. In 332 games, Bolland finished his career with the Blackhawks with 98 assists and 70 goals.
Bolland wasn’t the only player to be drafted from Chicago. Michael Frolik was also traded from the Blackhawks to Winnipeg for two more draft picks. It looks as if the squad was clearing space, perhaps in order to re-sign Bickell and stop him from becoming a free agent.