Concern No. 5: Consistency Of Play
The biggest thing Teravainen has lacked since becoming a regular player in the NHL is a consistency of what to expect from him. What he was billed as when the Blackhawks drafted him was a play-making center who saw the ice very well and could distribute the puck on offense, while being able to be defensively sound and could add to the penalty kill.
While there have been flashes of THAT Teravainen in the past, mostly in last year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs, the consistent Teravainen that fans have seen is an undersized center who gets out-muscled regularly on the forecheck, has flashes of crafty offensive talent and is average to sub-par defensively.
I’m not a hockey coach, but what I see and what others see is a pretty good indicator that those types of qualities in a player won’t bode well for the team most of the time. One of the major issues that is most likely causing Teravainen to be inconsistent on the ice is the carousel of players for his linemates. The four most recurring linemates for Teravainen this season were Andrew Desjardins, Tomas Fleischmann, Artem Anisimov and Andrew Shaw. Not exactly a murderers’ row of top-line forwards. If the Blackhawks want Teravainen’s game to grow consistently, they need to pair him with the proper group of talent that complements his style of play, as well as play him in a position that complements his style of play.
Next: Teuvo Concern #4