What was expected to happen at some point happened on Thursday afternoon, as the Chicago Blackhawks assigned forward Teuvo Teravainen to the Rockford IceHogs.
The 19-year-old Teravainen played in three games with the Blackhawks this season. He had a strong debut against the Dallas Stars on March 25, when he won all seven faceoffs he took. But two days later against the Boston Bruins he struggled. Coach Joel Quenneville said later that Teravainen needed to play his game, to not be too hesitant. He showed more glimpses of his potential against Pittsburgh on March 30 but hadn’t played since.
In recent scrums with Quenneville, the coach said he was uncertain what the team would do with Teravainen down the stretch. But the option to send him to Rockford was always a possibility. The IceHogs have five regular-season games remaining, including a tilt with the Milwaukee Admirals on Friday night. Rockford is currently fighting for a playoff spot.
The assignment to Rockford gives Teravainen the chance to play he wasn’t getting with the Blackhawks. It also gives him more opportunity to get used to North American ice, on which he hasn’t played much in his young career.