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updated: 7/13/2014 10:23 PM

No more frequent flier miles for Teravainen

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  • Teuvo Teravainen put on some muscle in the off-season and is hoping to play in Chicago and not Rockford when the Hawks begin their 2014-15 campaign.

      Teuvo Teravainen put on some muscle in the off-season and is hoping to play in Chicago and not Rockford when the Hawks begin their 2014-15 campaign.
    Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Teuvo Teravainen said he's "had a good summer thus far. I've tried to practice hard and get some weight on me and get stronger and get ready for next season."

      Teuvo Teravainen said he's "had a good summer thus far. I've tried to practice hard and get some weight on me and get stronger and get ready for next season."
    Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

 
 

Since we last saw Teuvo Teravainen following a short stint with the Blackhawks late in the regular season, the 19-year-old has added a "couple of kilos" to his frame, got some much-needed rest after a long, long year, and probably most important, relocated to Chicago this summer to cut down on all those round-trip flights to his native Finland as he focuses on making next year's roster.

"I'm going to stay here for practice; I'm not going to Finland back and forth," said the top prospect at the Blackhawks' week-long Prospect Camp which kicked off Sunday. "Just practice here and be ready for the season.

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"It's a lot of travel if I go back and forth (nine hours each way), so it's better to stay here and practice in one place and be with (strength coach) Paul Goodman."

And it's Teravainen's strength that has been the focus since the day the young center made his first visit to Chicago last season. Coach Joel Quenneville mentioned a number of times that adding some muscle would be a big benefit to Teravainen.

Message received.

"I had a good summer thus far. I've tried to practice hard and get some weight on me and get stronger and get ready for next season," said Teravainen, who is listed at 5-foot-11 and 179 pounds. "I need some good weight. More muscles -- that kind of weight.

"It just takes some time. I'm just a young kid, it will come."

Teravainen's youth may also play a factor in where he spends his time next season, perhaps with the big club, perhaps at Rockford, or perhaps a little of both. Hawks general manager Stan Bowman has repeatedly said he doesn't want to rush his prized prospect.

Perhaps with that in mind, Bowman signed Brad Richards to not only be the team's No. 2 center, but to also take a little pressure off Teravainen.

"I don't think those things too much, I just focus myself and try to practice hard," Teravainen said of the Richards signing. "I play where they put me and I'm trying to get some good time in here in prospect camp and work hard."

But would he be disappointed if he began the season at Rockford?

"I don't know if I'd be disappointed," he said. "Of course I want to play in the NHL, but if I go to Rockford I'll just try to work hard and play good and be ready all the time.

"I don't think too much now. I'm just trying to have fun and we'll see where I'm going to play."

For now, though, Teravainen's focus is strictly on this week's camp, and, oh yeah, his weight.

"Get some good practice and get on-ice practice going again," Teravainen said of his agenda. "It's just fun to be on the ice again.

"But most of my focus is my strength and getting stronger. I'm focused on that most."

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