The learning process continues for Andrew Shaw.
The forward played his fifth game as an NHL center Saturday night during the Blackhawks' 3-2 victory over the Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena. Shaw has shifted from wing to replace Dave Bolland in the middle on the third line — the so-called checking line — this season.
"It's going pretty well," said Shaw, who still is looking for his first points of the season. "I have stuff to work on. Playing center is a lot of responsibility. When I get that puck in the middle of the ice there's always someone coming at you so you have to think on your feet and make a good play."
Shaw said he has sought the advice of Bolland, who moved to the No. 2 line after spending much of his career as a shutdown center against opponents' top scoring lines.
"I talk to him about how he played in the defensive zone," Shaw said. "He was always on the back side of the 'D' in the corner and always supporting and flushing pucks up the wall."
Coach Joel Quenneville said so far, so good for Shaw.
"Defensively, he's learning his own end — down low in particular," Quenneville said. "He can continue to improve, be it his positioning or awareness. His instincts with the puck and around the puck are really good. We should see some growth in his game."
Front man: Also learning on the job is Viktor Stalberg, who is getting a chance on the Hawks' power play and has been tasked with providing traffic in front of opposing goaltenders.
Shaw enjoys learning role of 3rd-line center
Chicago Tribune | Jan 27