With Saad no longer on the team, someone had to take his place on the top line. But who would or could replace him? It looks like Teuvo Teravainen will be the man to replace Saad on the top line for the Blackhawks! In Monday morning’s practice the Chicago Blackhawks’ lines looked a bit different than what we are used to. Teravainen joins Marian Hossa as a winger for Jonathan Toews on the line after spending most of the preseason as the third line center for the Blackhawks.
Second, Third and Fourth Lines
While we saw a change in the top line, the second line appears to remain the same. Artem Anisimov will be centering Artemi Panarin and Patrick Kane. However, the third line also sees a change along with the top line. On the third line we see Andrew Shaw slotting in as a center between Bryan Bickell and Kyle Baun. Do you think Bickell wil step it up on this line? Lastly, the fourth line featured Marcus Kruger in his usual spot with Andrew Desjardins and Ryan Garbutt on the wings. I like these lines and can’t wait to see how they perform!
The Top Line Move
So what move Teravainen to the top line and Shaw back down to the third line? This definitely is an interesting move by Joel Quenneville because he typically always keeps a good scoring balance through his first three lines. And, while he sticks to that pattern, he said this switch isn’t for short-term benefit only. Coach Q told Chicago Sun-Times’ Mark Lazerus that Teravainen will start the season on the top line and will hopefully remain there all year because “He’s really matured from year to year, but probably made his biggest step this year. He feels he belongs.”
Teravainen can definitely step up and fill in those scoring gaps the Blackhawks have from roster changes because we saw some of what he can do in the postseason. Banner raising is in two days and we can finally see how this new talent plays out this season! Will we have a repeat? Coach Q hopes so and so do I!