With the NHL Entry Draft looming, Madhouse Enforcer is looking to prepare fans by not only looking at some of the best players that could be available when the Chicago Blackhawks go on the clock, but also at some of the best decisions that the team has made during their history at the draft.
Today we continue our countdown of the Top 10 Blackhawks draft picks of all time, and we will be examining the career of our #9 selection, defenseman Doug Wilson.
Selected with the sixth overall pick of the 1977 NHL Entry Draft, Wilson came into the league with some high expectations, and it can be reasonably said that he met or exceeded all of them. In 938 games with the Hawks, Wilson scored 225 goals and dished out 554 assists, and he won the Norris Trophy as the league’s best defenseman in 1982. He was also selected to the All-Star team on nine times, and was in the top four of Norris voting on four occasions.
In his first season with the Hawks, Wilson scored 14 goals and added 20 assists in 77 games, but he really began to come into his own in the 1981-82 season. In that campaign, he scored a mind-boggling 39 goals and dished out 46 assists for the Black Hawks, and he was awarded the Norris Trophy following the season. He also finished in ninth place in Hart Trophy voting, and his 14 power play goals smashed his previous career high of five in the category.
Wilson ended up cracking 20 goals twice more in his career, including in the 1989-90 season when he had 73 points (23 goals, 50 assists) for the Hawks. He was a Norris finalist that year. He played one more season in Chicago following that campaign before heading to the San Jose Sharks to wrap up his NHL career, where he would play two more seasons before hanging up his skates.
Following his retirement, Wilson has remained active in the game, and is currently the Sharks’ General Manager. He has yet to win a Cup with the team, but the squad is a perennial contender under his watch.
It may seem crazy that we have the Blackhawks’ all-time leading scorer among blue liners (779 points) in ninth place on this countdown, but we bumped him down for one simple reason: as the sixth overall pick in the draft, he was supposed to be a talented player. He was never the biggest star of the team, but he performed his role perfectly, and he will go down as one of the best players to ever don the uniform.