Chicago Blackhawks: Who will replace Brandon Saad on the top line?

Chicago Blackhawks, Brandon Saad #20 Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports
Chicago Blackhawks, Brandon Saad #20 Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports /

Dominik Kubalik and Jonathan Toews need a new partner on the top line due to Brandon Saad getting traded away. Today let’s highlight a few potential players that could play with the two Chicago Blackhawks’ stars.

Finding an ideal linemate can take time for any team. I mean, after losing Brandon Saad back in 2015, Jonathan Toews struggled the next few years with the Chicago Blackhawks. For Chicago to succeed, they need Toews at his best, something I highlighted in Toews 3 keys to success next season.

Toews is getting older, and losing Saad right now is not going to help his play. Hopefully, we will see someone step up to the plate and fill the hole that Bowman left on the top line when he traded Saad for a defenseman in Nikita Zadorov.

One player will not be able to fill the role that Brandon Saad is leaving behind on the Blackhawks. He played on the top line, was able to kill penalties, and even spent time on the power play.

For this case, I am just looking at a few players that could potentially fill in on the top line. When it comes to the defensive side of what Saad brought to the ‘Hawks, I think Lukas Wallmark and Mattias Janmark are going to fill on on the penalty kill.

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Potential Players That Could Fill In:

Dylan Strome

Assuming Dylan Strome gets a contract, the ‘Hawks might be better off moving him to the wing. Maybe sometime next season, we could potentially see Strome on the wing with Toews and Kubalik. Plus, this would allow for Chicago to see if Kubalik and Strome can build a little bit of chemistry something that would prove helpful down the line when Toews takes a step back in the top six.

Pius Suter: 

I have been talking a lot about Pius Suter as of late, and assuming he can jump into the NHL, he could be a force with Toews on the top line. Kubalik and Suter would be open to having some fantastic offensive moments and setting each other up for success, and they would have Toews in the middle, one of the best centers around. Suter is coming to the NHL in a similar way that Kubalik did a year before, and maybe they will be able to build some chemistry.

Andrew Shaw

Andrew Shaw hopefully will bounce back this season. More so than anyone else on this list, Shaw has a different play style than everyone above. Shaw is more of an aggressive player that is willing to get down low and work for the puck. With Toews and Kubalik getting separation on their opponent and doing their best to put the puck in the net, Shaw can work in front of the net and try to cause a little havoc. Chicago could use a different type of force on their top line, and Shaw can provide that spark.

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It is still anyone’s guess who will be on the top line along with Toews and Kubalik. Luckily, we will start to get more answers as a potential training camp is just around the corner in December with every day that is going by.