A NHL All-Star, an Olympic Gold Medalist, a Stanley Cup Champion, a Norris Trophy winner, and assistant captain of one of the most notable franchises in sports. Those are some of the highlights of Duncan Keith’s career, and many feel he is just getting started.
Duncan grew up in Fort Frances, Ontario. As a youngster he idolized NHL stars such as Ray Bourque, Cam Neely and Wayne Gretzky and his favorite team was the Boston Bruins.
At the age of 10 his coaches Gib and Bill Tucker decided to switch Duncan from forward to defense. He switched from forward to defense and has never looked back. After tearing up minor hockey, Duncan took the next step in his career by earning a spot on the Penticton Pantheres (now Penticton Vees) of the British Columbia Hockey League at the young age of 16.
After a stand-out junior career in Penticton, Keith was heavily recruited by various NCAA Division 1 schools finally choosing Michigan State University. Duncan was drafted 54th overall in the second round of the 2002 NHL Entry Draft after his first year at Michigan State. Duncan played one more year of college hockey before leaving for the Kelowna Rockets of the Western Hockey League.
Keith signed with the Chicago Blackhawks prior to the 2003-2004 season and was assigned to the Norfolk Admirals of the American Hockey League. Duncan played two years with Norfolk before getting his chance to fulfill his lifelong dream of playing in the NHL.
October 5, 2005 marked Duncan’s first career NHL game vs. the Anaheim Ducks. During his sophomore season, Duncan found himself paired with Brent Seabrook on the Blackhawks top defensive unit while leading the team in plus minus and time one ice. That same year, Duncan was selected to his first NHL All Star game.
The 2009 – 2010 season would prove to be a year to remember for Duncan. Keith signed a record 13 year deal with the Blackhawks locking him into the Windy City until 2022. He finished 2nd on the Hawks in points with 69 and added an additional 17 points in the playoffs. Keith is also remembered for taking a puck in the mouth during game four of the Western Conference Finals. He lost 7 teeth on the play, but was back on the ice just a few minutes later. The next round, he helped Chicago win its first Stanley Cup title since 1960 – 1961 season. Additionally, that January, Keith was a major factor in the Canadian Men’s Olympic Hockey Team winning gold at the 2010 Olympics. He lead Team Canada in time on ice and finished with six assists.
In the 2010 – 2011 season Duncan ranked second among club defensemen with seven goals, 38 assists and 45 points while being one of two Blackhawks to skate in all 82 regular-season games. Duncan led the NHL for the first time in his career with 26:53 of ice time per game, which was his sixth straight season leading Chicago in that category.
In the summer of 2011 Duncan started “Keith Relief”, whose mission is dedicated to alleviating the financial and emotional burdens of families and individuals suffering from medical crisis.