Versteeg replaced an injured Bryan Bickell during Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals on Wednesday and gained a favorable review from Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville. Versteeg was a plus-9 Corsi and played 9:32 in Game 1.
“I liked his game,” Quenneville said on Thursday. “He had good pace to his game, good energy. Hadn't played in a while, as well. Coming off a couple exciting days. It was good for him yesterday. I liked what he did. So, good chance he's playing.”
Versteeg did have a few interesting days. He flew from Chicago to Toronto on Monday for the birth of his first child, flew from Toronto to Chicago to Tampa on Tuesday to rejoin the team, participated in the morning skate Wednesday and then played in Wednesday’s game.
“I felt comfortable almost right off the bat,” said Versteeg, who has been scratched for 10 playoff games this season. “Just thought I’d get in there and gave everything I had. Maybe with the puck at the start, you don’t want to do too much. As I kept going on I felt a little better.”
Bickell is considered day-to-day with an upper-body injury.
Van Riemsdyk update: Quenneville said again Thursday rookie defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk could play in Game 2 on Saturday.
Van Riemsdyk hasn’t played in an NHL game since Nov. 16 and has had surgeries on his left patella and right wrist this season. Quenneville continues to have faith van Riemsdyk could help the Blackhawks.
“He played surprisingly to a different level than we anticipated he could get to,” Quenneville said. “Obviously we missed him when he got injured. Would have been a nice evolution over the course of the season to see how that would have ended, unfortunately a couple of major injuries. But he's worked hard right now to get himself excited. But nice to have that option, ready to go.”
Teravainen spotlight: Blackhawks rookie forward Teuvo Teravainen received the biggest laugh of Thursday’s media session after being asked about all of his family members who play hockey back home in Finland.
“My mom plays floor ball; it's popular in Finland,” Teravainen said. “My dad also. My sister is pretty good, too. My brother is pretty good. He's a D man. But I think right now I'm the best. We'll see how it's going.”