Blackhawks' Luke Richardson hopes to make Kyle Davidson's job tough

·3 min read

Richardson hopes to make Davidson's job tough by winning originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

Luke Richardson knew what he was signing up for when GM Kyle Davidson hired him to be the Blackhawks' permanent head coach. This is the beginning stages of a full-scale rebuild and it's going to require a lot of patience.

However, that doesn't mean Richardson is going to accept losing, even if the Blackhawks' roster is designed to finish near or at the bottom of the league this season.

"I told Kyle right off the hop that we’re going to make his job the toughest job possible and try to win as much as possible," Richardson said on Wednesday ahead of his first training camp as an NHL head coach.

Davidson laughed and quickly interjected, saying: "Having said that, I want to win. I want to win."

[RELATED: Blackhawks GM Kyle Davidson: 'No discussion' on trading Kane, Toews]

There's no doubting that Richardson and Davidson both want to win, but the ultimate goal is to build a perennial Stanley Cup contender again and that's expected to take a long time as the organization replenishes its pipeline.

"I think there's two different perspectives," Davidson said. "You walk into that room, and every game matters. These guys are competitors, we're all competitors. You don't get into this industry if you don't want to win every night. But, from my perspective in the more macro view of things, we are having a more long-term view of this at times, and given the current trajectory of the franchise, we are thinking long-term in many respects.

"But that doesn't change the fact that when you walk into the rink, you walk into the United Center, you want the Blackhawks to win, and that doesn't change. And so that's the view I take on it. The coaching staff I'm sure is much more — you look at the game tonight and how do we win the game? That's how we all look at it. But they're looking a little more tactical and micro."

Richardson probably understands all that and trusts the process. He likely won't get caught up in the wins and losses this season, for all the reasons listed above.

[MORE: Who will be Patrick Kane's linemates this season? Here's an early indication]

But he's also trying to create a winning culture, and the only way to do that is by, well, winning and competing every single night.

"It’s always been in my nature to be competitive, to win in this league and to have a chance to work for an iconic Original Six team," Richardson said. "It’s not more pressure, it’s just more determination to get it where it should be, and that’s at the top. There’s really no timetable. It might take some time.

"But I’m an optimist and I think we can cut that time and make it go quicker and if we do, that’s great, and I think everybody’s happy because we’re going in the right direction. Just might be a little step ahead than we thought, but we’re not there yet even. We have to see where we’re at Day 1 and just get better every day from there.

"Maybe we’re a little bit deeper than I think we are, but I think with the additions that we made this summer with some speed and guys that have played in the league, to help the young players get to where they have to go, that’ll be a good chemistry and a good mix of older guys, younger guys, in-between guys and get us where we need to go."

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