It appears as if the Blackhawks are beginning to round into post-season form, and doing so with a deadly new weapon. Top-prospect Teuvo Teravainen made his Blackhawks debut Tuesday night as the Hawks downed the Stars 4-2. More on Teravainen below, but first let’s address the Hawks play as of late.
What stood out to me the most in the past week is the Hawks 4-0 clobbering of the Blues. I won’t lie, before the game I had butterfly’s in my stomach before the game much like I would for a Stanley Cup Playoff matchup. Given the Blues dominance since the acquisition of Ryan Miller, it’s fair to say that they were the team to beat in the West. The Hawks came out flying and showed the Blues that poppa was here to play. Simply outmatched, the Stanley Cup Champion Blackhawks had their way with the Blues. IF that doesn’t give Hawks fans confidence going into the playoffs, then my next paragraph should seal the deal for you.
Teuvo Teravainen is an intelligent hockey player. Thoroughly justifying his top-prospect label, Teravainen displayed the all around game that made it clear the Hawks have something special on hand. His hesitance to jump into the offensive game can be seen as a positive. If he is focused on the defensive part of his game, he will do just fine in Coach Q’s system. During his regular strength and power play ice time, Teravainen made several sleek passes that highlighted his playmaking capabilities. I won’t go as far to say the hype for him was justified, but he definitely did not look out of place.
If Teravainen is able to stick, the return of Patrick Kane becomes much more interesting. Teravainen’s presence as a competent second line center that is able to feed Kane the puck will go a long way towards improving the Hawks offense. It’s still early to annoit Teravainen as the savior, but I will say that based off of one game, he definitely did not look out of place in an NHL game.