Marcus Kruger has been asked about Michael Frolik’s absence a few times already this season. His former fourth-line and penalty-killing partner is now making his mark with the Winnipeg Jets. Kruger always wished Frolik well — well, almost always. “I hope he’s good. Except against us,” Kruger said with a grin. On paper, Frolik may have been labeled a fourth liner who didn’t hit his pre-trade scoring potential in his time with the Blackhawks. But for anyone who watched last season, Frolik’s value turned out to be tremendous. He took to the penalty kill like a duck would take to one of Manitoba’s 100,000 lakes. He and Kruger had great chemistry on a fourth line that was given plenty of minutes and responsibility. And in seeing the Blackhawks’ penalty kill through the first few games, there’s no doubt the team missed the void left by Frolik’s trade. The Blackhawks will have a mini-reunion with a few players, including Frolik, when they take on the Winnipeg Jets on Saturday afternoon. Reconfiguring the penalty kill without Frolik proved to be tough. As well as Frolik adjusted to it from the start, that didn’t happen with others out of this camp. “It’s been an area of concern from the outset,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “Just the way Fro grabbed it after not having the chance a couple years, we felt it was there for someone to grab. It’s still a work in progress for us. He did an excellent job for us. He was a key factor in our success, in the regular season and playoffs.” Meanwhile, Frolik, who was traded to the Jets during the 2013 NHL Entry Draft on June 30, has two goals and four assists in his first 14 games with Winnipeg. On Friday, Frolik reminisced with Winnipeg media about the Cup-team memories he’ll always have.
Blackhawks' PK moving on from Frolik departure
CSN Chicago | Nov 2