A few days ago, this began as a discussion in the comments, and I thought I'd take a stab at it in a full article. On the rosters of the Chicago Blackhawks and Chicago Cubs, which players correspond to each other, either in temperament or performance or both? The Cubs dressed in Blackhawks jerseys (photo above) before Saturday's rainout, but who would they be if they actually wore those sweaters in hockey games?
I admit that I don't know the Blackhawks roster as well as I do the Cubs, so you might disagree with some of my selections. Thought this might be a fun thing to do with Stanley Cup Final Game 1 coming up tonight. Go Blackhawks!
Anthony Rizzo: Jonathan Toews. Both are the undisputed leaders of their teams and their performances are at All-Star levels. Rizzo could also be called the Cubs' "Captain Serious," though he's seen laughing and having fun more than Toews is.
Kris Bryant: Patrick Kane. Kane dazzles with his skating and scoring abilities. Bryant wowed a Wrigley crowd last week by hitting the left-field video board with a home run ball, and probably not for the last time. Kane, of course, has been around longer than Bryant. We can only hope that seven years into Bryant's career, he's as good in MLB as Kane is in the NHL.
Miguel Montero: Marian Hossa. Savvy veteran who contributes as much with his intelligence as with his play. Both have lost a step, but can still provide offense when needed.
Jake Arrieta: Corey Crawford. Both struggled early in their careers and suddenly arrived as stars when given the chance to produce and some improved coaching.
Starlin Castro: Brandon Saad. Can be spectacular at times, shaky at others. Both are young for their sport and there's still hope for true stardom for both.
Addison Russell: Teuvo Teravainen. Rookies who are expected to become . Both have shown signs of this kind of play already.
David Ross: Kimmo Timonen. Longtime veteran brought in to show veteran-ness, whatever that means. They've both shown signs of this, but both careers are just about done.
Dexter Fowler: Antoine Vermette. Another veteran player acquired for his savvy. They've produced fairly well in their roles.
Jon Lester: Duncan Keith. Both stars of their respective sports, they know what it takes to win. Neither has to produce much offense in order to be a key contributor.
Jason Hammel: Brent Seabrook. Just when you think people have forgotten about you, you make important contributions to winning teams.
Jorge Soler: Andrew Shaw. Producing far beyond their years, they can both contribute on offense and defense.
Chris Coghlan: Marcus Kruger. Can surprise on occasion with important plays, even in limited playing time.
Hector Rondon: Niklas Hjalmarsson. The Cubs' closer and the stalwart defenseman help prevent runs and goals, respectively.
Kyle Hendricks: Patrick Sharp. Sometimes overlooked, nearly always consistent.
Jason Motte: Johnny Oduya. More veterans a bit past their prime.
Justin Grimm: Scott Darling. Both have provided dependable relief this season.
Pedro Strop: Andrew Desjardins. Both are very good role players.
Travis Wood: Brad Richards. Both just trying to hang on.
Edwin Jackson: Kris Versteeg. Both used to be good. Both are now their respective fanbases' favorite player to complain about.
That's 19 players, probably the 19 most important Blackhawks players and most of the key Cubs. I should note both teams have a player named "Kris," for whatever that's worth. If I left someone out that you'd like to compare, or you disagree with mine, that's what the comments are for.