… That’s assuming he comes over here. But the point of the headline is perfectly clear. If head coach Joel Quenneville is right, and he is bringing Teuvo Teräväinen to the Chicago Blackhawks, he’ll be given the Marcus Kruger and Brandon Saad treatment and be given a trial by fire. With the final stretch of the season and playoffs coming up, Teuvo will have to adjust to the NHL, and quick.
Teräväinen’s Finnish club team Jokerit has one game left in their season. They’re the seventh seed in the playoffs with a three-game series set to start on Saturday. Depending one what happens, he could be here in the States as early as Mar. 16 or as late as Apr. 26. There was speculation he might join the Finland National Team for the World Championships, but it seems as if the Finnish Hockey Federation has given him their “blessing” to go to North America.
If Teräväinen does come, he’ll pretty much be the team’s second-line center for the playoffs. Teräväinen is 19, and while he captained the Finnish team at the World Juniors and his Jokerit team, the NHL is a completely different beast. The players are the best in the world — faster, bigger, more physical than in Europe.
However, there is good reason to be confident, should Teräväinen come over. Quenneville mentioned how he’s progressing over in Finland; that kind of confidence is reassuring. Just as important, Teräväinen would be surrounded by players who have been in the long-fought NHL playoffs and a few Europeans — including fellow Finn Antti Raanta — who could help him adjust to the NHL.
Teräväinen’s timetable for coming to North America is not set in stone, but should he come over some time in the next couple of weeks, he’ll have his work cut out for him. With his already impressive skills and talent, combined with leadership experience and a team of playoff-tested warriors around him, there is reason to be confident in Teuvo Teräväinen.