Blackhawks News

Teuvo Teravainen Should Make The Blackhawks Opening Day Roster

By Keith Schultz
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Mar 25, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks left wing

Teuvo Teravainen

(86) reaches for the puck against Dallas Stars center

Shawn Horcoff

(10) during the third period at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

It appears that the Blackhawks top 3 lines have been decided before one preseason game is even in the books.  After one day of practice it already looks like the top line will be Jonathan Toews with Patrick Sharp and Marian Hossa.  The second line that clicked from their first shift at training camp will be Brad Richards with Patrick Kane and Brandon Saad, and the third line will be Andrew Shaw with Bryan Bickell and the much hyped Kris Versteeg. The fourth line has an opening with Marcus Kruger and Ben Smith with the newest Blackhawks enforcer Brandon Mashinter the odds on favorite.

The problem with the third and fourth line is that the most exciting player to watch is not on any of those lines and his name as we all know is Teuvo Teravainen.  Teuvo looks like a different player than we saw last year in Pittsburgh.  He’s bigger up to 176 pounds having gained some kilo’s in the offseason working out daily with the Blackhawks strength and conditioning coach, and he looks like he’s rested and extremely quick after a summer off of hockey after a year of Finnish league with the World Juniors thrown in for good measure (Gold Medal by the way)

If Teuvo was a 2007 draft pick by the Blackhawks he would have been on the 2008 opening day roster like Toews and Kane, but the Blackhawks have built up the talent base enough that the Hawks can be “patient” with Teuvo and let him grow into the position which seems like a total waste! Sure it made sense for the GM not to burn a year of a contract over 10 games, but now his contract is ticking so now is the time to play Teuvo.

There is other things to consider for Teuvo making the team. Where will he play with the Top 3 lines in apparent lockdown already.  One reason is to find a spot for Teuvo in the lineup while the second point is giving Joel Quenneville enough time to become comfortable with Teuvo so when the spring and the playoffs come calling Teuvo will not just be another player watching from the pressbox.

The Blackhawks should be playing the best 12 forwards they have on a nightly basis and it’s evident from everything we have seen so far that Teuvo is far and away one of the Top 12 on the Blackhawks roster today, and he should be”on the opening night roster instead of becoming a Rockford Ice Hog to get a little more seasoning!

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It’s a Stanley Cup season or bust for the Blackhawks, but they sure seem like they would be better served with a lot of Teuvo and whole lot less Mashinter!

What do you think? Should Teuvo make the opening day roster?

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