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Teuvo Teravainen must develop shooter’s mentality

Updated: March 31, 2014 1:31PM



PITTSBURGH — Teuvo Teravainen wants to shoot first and ask himself questions later.

“I need to shoot more,” the Blackhawks rookie said after the morning skate Sunday at Consol Energy Center. “Just too much thinking to pass all the time. It’s a different game here. I just need to shoot more and get the puck to the net and get rebounds, I think.”

He responded with four shots on goal in 16:50, even replacing Jonathan Toews on the top line after the captain was injured in the second period.

Teravainen always has been a playmaker first, a scorer second. As Jokerit’s leading scorer this season in Finland, he had only nine goals to go with 35 assists. But goals in the NHL come differently than they do in Finland. In North America, it’s more about generating chances via traffic in front of the net and rebounds. That starts with simply shooting more often. And through his first two games, Teravainen had yet to get a shot on goal — with only one attempt in each game.

“It’s a new world here, a new game, a new style,” Teravainen said.

Teravainen returned to the lineup against the Penguins after sitting out the game against the Senators. He began on a line with Kris Versteeg and Peter Regin as coach Joel Quenneville continued to juggle his lines with Patrick Kane (knee) and Bryan Bickell (upper body) out.

“It’ll be good,” Versteeg said before the game. “Hopefully, I’ll help him out and help him score his first goal. I told him to put his stick on the ice, I’ll find him.

Added Quenneville: “Just be confident out there. He’s had some good opportunities there where he’s looking to maybe take it out of the scoring area to make a play. He’s being nice to his linemates. . . . Just be confident with the puck and want the puck and just play.”

Teravainen hasn’t been terribly overwhelmed by playing in the NHL. And he wasn’t star-struck by the idea of lining up for a faceoff against Penguins star Sidney Crosby. At least, not entirely.

“If I win a faceoff from Sidney Crosby, that would be awesome,” Teravainen said with a smile.

Email: mlazerus@suntimes.com

Twitter: @MarkLazerus



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