Blackhawks Role New-Look Lines

As they await the schedule for their upcoming series against the Minnesota Wild, the Blackhawks rolled a new look with their forwards at practice on Monday. The lines were:

Brandon Saad – Jonathan Toews – Marian Hossa

Bryan Bickell – Brad Richards – Patrick Kane

Patrick Sharp – Antoine Vermette – Teuvo Teravainen

Andrew Desjardins – Marcus Kruger – Andrew Shaw

Noticeably missing are Kris Versteeg and Joakim Nordstrom. Will these lines stick when the second round begins?

29 thoughts on “Blackhawks Role New-Look Lines

  1. 23 needs to spend more time on his skates than on his butt. I hope this is not just a message. 86 has shown good skill and solid defense. This makes the 3 solid scoring lines. Also love how 11 has played. Nice little move by Stan.

  2. Versteeg is a liability and doesn’t seem to have good hands or smart instincts come playoff time-his instinct always seems to be to peel off and try to make a dangerous pass and he shrinks under pressure. I would love Teuvo to get some experience here because he, not Versteeg, is the future. Bickell might buy Kane more time on that line.

  3. Versteeg needs to sit. Add him to the cap casualty list next year (assuming his contract is up, which I think it is). Throw 86 out there and see if he sticks. I also think Crawford will rebound. He had a nice game in relief the other night.

    Any scuttlebutt about the round 2 schedule? I know they won’t start until round 1 is done (so depends on what happens tonight) plus also depends on the Bulls/Bucks. But would they start as early as Thursday or Friday since those look like open dates on the UC schedule?

    Tab – where did the fancystats links go? You just pointed them out the other day and now they’ve disappeared during the redesign.

  4. I thought Versteeg has two more years on his deal – Florida pays 1/2 the tab so he costs the Blackhawks $2M per.

    Still, I think they’ll move on from him after this season barring anything unforeseen.

  5. Probably the best line combo’s available they will need all these guys for this series.

  6. ^Mistake on my part, Versteeg’s deal is just one more year, not two. It expires end of next season and then he’s UFA.

  7. I have followed the Hawks for over 50 years now, yet, when I heard Corey back Darling and wish him luck, then saw him watching the game from the bench, my heart and mind felt great emotions for him. He had another great year and I hated this part of the game. I didn’t blame Q or Corey, stuff happens. Then, Corey was summoned to hold the fort and did so marvelously. Congratulations to Corey and the best of luck in the future of these Playoffs and the regular seasons ahead.

    GO CROW !

  8. I don’t Teuvo brings anything to this series. I agree he’s the future, but this is the last chance at the cup with this roster. The Wild will smother TT and limit his space. I don’t hate him like others do (I think Rufus???). Versteeg atleast plays an agitating role. Obviously more offense is key but we need some amount of sandpaper.

  9. TimG Our prayers have been answered!

    With these lines, I predict victory in 6. Now if you tell me Cumiskey has been skating in place of 44 I will know we are playing this series to win in 5.

  10. I can easily see Versteeg on next years team.

    Darling’s play makes the idea of trading Crawford somewhat plausible (~5 million once the backup is called up).

    Bickell’s at the top obviously. Sharp is next on the list, followed by Seabrook (who they NEED to keep with all the young dmen coming up)

    New forwards added in 2015-2015: Baun, Teravainen and a mix of Danault, Kero, McNeil, Ross, and Hartman

    New defensemen added in 2015-2016: Paliotta, Johns, Pokka, and the return of TvR

  11. Teuvo Teravainen over Versteegggggg is a no brainer! TnT will be on the second line power play which is why he’s up and on the ice. Also TnT gives you some bench flexibility if ya want to win the cup, Q can insert him on any line at any time and gives him a little more puck movement and the most skilled passer on the team.

    DO MOT CONFUSE HOSSA SKATING WITH THE PUCK FOR 20 SECONDS as puck movement, NOT THE SAME! Kane and TnT really look to move the puck, a very rare skill!

    If they touch or tinker anymore I predict with certainty, trouble. We’ll have enough uncertainty in between the pipes if the WILD steals the first few games.

    Also TnT, while many here and everywhere don’t see his value has value that other hawks don’t provide! Some speed and he likes the middle of the ice, and he unlike Versteeg who holds and holds and skates with the puck until he loses it and often doesn’t make the right play. TnT plays fast and you gotta know where he is at on the ice. So it’s will draw more defense men out than Versteeg skating around the perimeter! Versteeg is ok, but really does not add anything WILD cant defend.

    Great Move by Hawks period!

  12. Adding TnT next to Vermette I feel give Vermette the best chance to show how good he really is. TnT knows where to find him, where he likes the puck, even from watching film Tnt gets it , hes a vey quick read, and Vermette is the guy who will benefit. I like Vermette and maybe this combination is right, i have voiced from day one he should be with KANE for the same reason,

    Even Richards needs to be set up but DAMN HE’s NOW MAKING HIS OWN PLAYS.
    cant say enough about him, really really playing hard so playoff hardened!

  13. On paper that is a violent lineup. If Richards and Shaw continue to play like they are possessed, and they should- this could be 91’s last hurrah, and 65 has a lot to prove- I like our chances against any team. Sharp is back, Bickell’s shoulders are getting a nice warmup, Hoss will score at some point but regardless he’s Hoss- it’s the wild cards that will make this team great or average. My biggest question is who shadows Parise? For the past couple years it’s been 4 and 27 against other teams’ top scoring lines (basing this on my memory of Corsi against stats), but 4 is looking a little hurt and doesn’t have the body type to chase a fireball like Parise, and 27 is past his prime but has the right skill set. Is it 2? Do you waste his all around game on all defense? How about Shaw lifting his stick every 5 seconds? My suggestion is bring in a kid to bang on him and let the other Wild players beat us if they can. How about bring in TVR without a stick and a cast on his arm? Or bring Rundblad in and threaten to bench him if he crosses the red line? This is of course why am not a hockey coach, but Parise is the second best forward left in the tournament, the Hawks can not let him beat them like the (womp womp) Blues did. I feel good for Crawford, but man, the play when he was holding on to no puck, and the other one when he was late to follow the puck to the middle for the backdoor shot… You just didn’t get that poor positioning with Darling. Darling wasn’t great but jeez, he got hung out to dry. Whatever, hopefully Crow gets back on track, we have a good goalie backing him up and a coach that’s not afraid to use him.

  14. Q has put some good lines together. I hope he sticks with it so they can gain some continuity. The third line will be a nightmare for the wild to defend. I expect some goals from 80 with 86 feeding him. I wonder what is happening with the defense. Rozy has had his ups and downs so I expect him to start. 44 has been awful and I just do not see how Cumiskey could be any worse. Plus Cumiskey is perhaps the fastest skater on the team.

  15. Tab: Your headline should read “Blackhawks Roll New-Look Lines.”

    Thanks for terrific site.

  16. @Dickie Dunn Thanks for the link. Great comparative piece on the cap and how the Hawks v Bruins have had to deal with it. We’ll be up against it again very soon, but I think we’ve offset a lot of that pain by who we paid to keep and how well we’ve nurtured and developed talent in our system. There’s no way to tell if the kids will preform once they hit the big stage, but I like our chances. Patience is a good thing!

  17. Anybody think they should try Sharp Hoss Toews? Sharp is really skating well right now and I feel like that would only boost his game. That line was money before a couple years ago

  18. That line was good a yr ago. A couple yrs ago the 20/19/81 line was the standard line and is again this yr. Sharpy brings a pure sniper to the line and Saader brings a premium defensive to the line (even though 10 is good at defense and 20 is good at offense).

    The two way 1st line seems like its the same guy (20/20/20/)(19/19/19/) or (81/81/81). I see three of them out there.

    Remember Saader was the guy we put to the 1st line in the first game against BOS when we needed to stop/slow down their 1st line because we hadn’t seen a line like that all yr. Saader was a rookie that yr and was good but hes really good now.

    No one knows Q better then Q when to put it into 4 wheel drive, on the fly.

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