Hawks kids getting Hall of Fame kudos

MIKE ZEISBERGER, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:32 AM ET

Denis Savard and his trademark dipsy-doodle moves left more than one opponent's jock strap lying on the ice during his journey to the Hockey Hall of Fame.

But even he admits being impressed by the jukes and jives the dynamic teenage duo of Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane have displayed just three weeks into their infant NHL careers.

"They are better than I ever was. Way better. They really are," Savard, the coach of the Chicago Blackhawks, said yesterday of his two budding stars.

Better than the man who made the Savardian Spin-o-rama a weekly feature on the local highlight reels?

"It's a different era than when I played,' Savard said. "These kids are in much better shape and had much better coaching in minor hockey.

"It's refreshing because not only are they both very skilled but they're both so smart out on the ice."

The capacity crowd at the Air Canada Centre witnessed the pizzazz of the Hawks' Kiddy Corps less than five minutes into the game against the Maple Leafs last night. Toews, 19, and Kane, 18, combined to set up Jason Williams for the opening goal of the evening, a memorable performance for two rookies who were making their inaugural appearances on Hockey Night in Canada.

Thanks to the assist, Toews has now notched a point in all six of his career NHL games, none more spectacular than his goal against the Colorado Avalanche on Friday.

His amazing solo rush actually took the honour as ESPN's highlight of the night, an amazing feat considering the network all but ignores hockey.

"I heard about that," Toews, a native of Winnipeg, said sheepishly. "It's not too often hockey gets on there. I had a lot of speed going and, well, everything just happened so fast.

"It's been an awesome ride so far. I played at Joe Louis Arena, lined up against Joe Sakic and now I'm at the Air Canada Centre."

Kane, the former London Knight who was the first overall pick in the 2007 entry draft, entered play last night with seven points in his first seven games.

"(Toews) and I are roommates on the road so we give each other shots," Kane said. "Sometimes we just laugh because it's fun to think of the careers we have ahead of us."


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