When Patrick Kane reported for his fifth NHL season with a splint on his surgically repaired left wrist, nobody noticed the chip on his shoulder.

The greatest athletes often have better hearing too, and Kane returned well aware of the whispers he was too pretty to play a center position more suited for someone gritty. The Blackhawks would like to thank every skeptic with a promotional giveaway, but the doubters might not fit into the United Center.

"A lot of people laughed at the idea, some of the media and my teammates, and some people in the organization too, but I felt like you're still playing hockey so do the things you love to do,'' Kane told the Tribune. "I was trying to prove to people I can do it. So far I guess I have.''

Good guess, Stan Bowman.