Chicago Blackhawks News & Notes: Top Line Changing, One Defenseman Waived, Another Recalled

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Photo courtesy of cbssports.com

Here’s a few tidbits that happened in the land of the Chicago Blackhawks today.

As the Blackhawks prepare for Tuesday night’s game in Arizona, the top line will have a little bit of a different look to it. Now, formations are constantly changing, especially in Chicago, so I wouldn’t expect this to be a permanent move, but for the time being Andrew Shaw has replaced Teuvo Taraveinen on the top line with Jonathan Toews and Marion Hossa. A Brent Seabrook goal with a few seconds left in Sunday’s game is the only goal the Blackhawks have scored in the last two games and Coach Q felt the need to make a change.

“It could be short term, ” coach Joel Quenneville told the media about the changes. “Teuvo’s been in and out of there, but Shawzy’s been playing well. We’ll see, but I think it’s more so reward. Shawzy deserves a chance to play up there.”

This will be the third time that Shaw has been on the top line this season and seems to be ready for this chance.

“Playing with those two guys, they’re going to have the puck a lot, ” Shaw told the media. “Create some space, get to the net and find some dirty goals.”

Captain Jonathan Toews is excited as well.

“(He brings) energy, he’s going to the net, he’s doing those little things that need to be done, ” Toews said of Shaw. “He’s playing with a ton of confidence right now, so he’s making great plays, scoring goals. It’s fun to see Shawzy play that way because he’s pretty much doing it all.”

It’s tough to say right now how long this line will stay together, but a little jump start to the offense certainly wouldn’t hurt. We’ll see if Shaw is the answer.

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In other news, the Blackhawks have placed David Rundblad on waivers. The 25-year-old defenseman has only played in nine games this season and hasn’t seen action since December 13th. In those nine appearances, he had zero goals and two assists. Rundblad was a former first-round draft pick of the St. Louis Blues (17th overall) in 2009, was traded to Ottawa, then to Phoenix before coming to Chicago last year.

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Speaking of a defensemen, Erik Gustafsson has been recalled from the AHL’s Rockford IceHogs. The 23-year-old, who is playing his first season in North America, scored three goals and had eight assists in 27 games with Rockford and is in the first year of a two-year contract with Chicago. He has zero goals and three assists in six games with the Blackhawks this year.

In addition, Marcus Kruger has been placed on injured reserve. He underwent successful surgery for a broken wrist ten days ago.

The Blackhawks face off with Arizona at 8:00 on Tuesday night.

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