Practice Report - Tuesday, Oct. 30
Blackhawks coach Denis Savard modified his lineup slightly Tuesday, moving Adam Burish back onto the top line with Robert Lang and Jason Williams. Patrick Sharp, who played wing on that line Saturday against Atlanta, rotated into Burish's spot on the 3rd line with Dave Bolland and Yanic Perreault.
Burish understands exactly what Savard and the Hawks coaching staff expects from him in this top line role.
"[My job is] to create energy for those guys and hopefully stir up some loose pucks for them -- the same thing I've been doing playing on the other line," Burish said. "It's not going to change playing with those two guys. They're very skilled guys and it's a treat to play with them, but my role is still going to be to get the front of the net, create turnovers, be the first guy on the forecheck, bang some bodies and hopefully loosen some things up for them.
"Langer said to me today, 'Hey, you just go out there. You just go fly around'," Burish added. "He can find guys. If I'm stretching things out with my skating and speed, that's going to give him some more space too."
Burish is scoreless so far this season, but said he doesn't feel any added pressure to produce points playing on the top line.
"I can't worry about scoring. I'm there to help those guys. I'm not there looking for points for myself. They may help me get some points because of the way they play. But I'm not trying to do things myself. I'm there to help them and create space and energy for them."
Savard has been happy with Sergei Samsonov's effort at practice but plans to make him a healthy scratch for the second straight game Wednesday night in Dallas ... Rene Bourque will remain on the 4th line with Kevyn Adams and Martin Lapointe until he shows that he can bring a consistent power forward presence every night. Savard is looking for the kind of effort Bourque displayed last December against Toronto in which he tied for the team lead in shots (4), led the team in hits (3) and was second among forwards in ice time (19:31) ... Brent Seabrook and Jim Vandermeer were paired together for the first time this season Tuesday; Magnus Johansson partnered with James Wisniewski.