Sure, many of the eyes are on the rookies, but what was extremely noticeable was Bryan Bickell sticking his nose in the dirty areas opening up the slots for his line-mates (Teravainen, Kane).
Bryan Bickell has gone from 2 years ago being a booed player to people flocking the Blackhawks store looking to add a #29 jersey to their collection of Hawks repertoire.
The lines are "soft lines" when it comes to Coach Quenneville and how he manipulates them during the season, and often during a game. However, that being said, there have been some lines that look as if they are going to form.
1. Bickell - Toews - Kane (This looks pretty set to start the season)
2. Sharp - Saad- Hossa ( I think it's Saad's job to lose at this point)
3. Morin - Shaw - Smith (This line is turning into a nice looking line)
4. Kruger - Pirri - J.Hayes (The third and fourth lines will probably be tinkered with a bit)
Alt. (Handzus, Bollig)...ahh, so this is why Handzus was paid only $1m eh? (Age, and decreased ice time are expected.)
They have alternate centers on every line. Kane (who has played center in the past), Sharp, Kruger.
Handzus could always give one of the centers a break, but, I think he'll be there if someone gets injured or someone isn't performing up to par. I expect Handzus to make only around 30-40 appearances.
There still is some camp left, but the rookies did come to impress. The one certainly with the biggest "splash" was Teuvo Teravainen. If this kid doesn't make it next year, I'll eat my shorts. He had fans, Hawks brass, Hawks veterans all on their seats talking about his skill and speed. He needs to build up some bulk, ... and get used to more game time experience. That is it.
I was impressed with Maxim Shalunov and his ability to find the net. He's heading back to Russia. He's still young. Only 20 yrs old. He needs to get some AHL time and used to the NHL type ice.
Ryan Hartman was raising eyebrows. This kid is definitely not afraid of getting his hands dirty. He is built a bit like Andrew Shaw. (Physically and his temperament).
Drew LeBlanc was noticeable (in a good way...he'll still be heading to Rockford though).
Jo-Mo (Jeremy Morin) is filling the net. I have said it before,...this is my new man-crush. He's the kid I'll be watching more than any other rookie. He's got that "wow" factor.
Jimmy Hayes has impressed the coaching staff. He's come in to camp with that vigor to make the squad,...and it shows. Great on ya Jimmy!
Brandon Pirri's been hurt and out of the lineup the past few days. I haven't heard any "wow" things about Pirri or for that matter, Ben Smith. Hope that wow factor starts soon.
In the rookie tournament we heard the cream of that class was Mark McNeill and Phillip Danault. In training camp,...the buzz has been quiet. Both will be heading to Rockford.
Kyle Beach has had a good camp. However, good isn't going to be nearly good enough in order to crack this lineup. He had to be a standout. Sad to say it,...first round bust.
Ryan Stanton has been quite impressive. Yes, he is making it hard on the Hawks staff for they would bring him up in a second if it wasn't for Sheldon Brookbank. Let's see if Stan can pull some magic out of his hat and send Brookbank packing.
Adam Clendening has also shown why many eyes are on this kid. I think he has a game a lot like Chris Chelios. He's only 20 years old and his future is quite bright.
Dylan Olsen,...........who? Twitter, Topsy, FB, google new news, blogs,.........zzzzzzzzzzzzzz. NOTHING on this guy. I've read more on Klas dahlbeck than him. I've seen people crave more about Michael Kostka and Theo Peckham than him. Sad to say,...I think he's another first round bust.