5 Reasons Why Jonathan Toews Is The Best Captain In The NHL

5 Reasons Why Jonathan Toews Is The Best Captain In The NHL

It shouldn't even be debatable anymore.


It is not easy to be a Chicago Blackhawks fan right now. It is not easy to be a sports fan in general, especially when the regular season is six months long, a roller coaster of ups and downs is inevitable. The Blackhawks are currently going through a rough patch, and being so close to the playoffs isn’t making it any easier.

The season began with eyes on the prize — another Stanley Cup. No team has won two Stanley Cups in a row since the Detroit Red Wings in 1997 and 1998. The Blackhawks came close in 2014 but lost the Western Conference Final to the Los Angeles Kings. The loss was devastating, since the Cup was so close, and Chicago bounced back by winning the Cup in 2015. Nobody wants to experience the disappointment of 2014 again, and that is why all Blackhawks fans are in freak-out mode.

I am a fan of looking on the bright side, so I decided to find something to smile about. I think one thing all Blackhawks fans should remember that our team has Jonathan Toews, the best captain in the NHL by miles, and here are my top five reasons (in no particular order) why.

1. He's a team player.

Shortly after Toews' third Stanley Cup win, famed Blackhawks reporter for Chicago Sun Times Mark Lazerus argued that "Jonathan Toews' value goes beyond the scoresheet." He opens with a statement that is tough to refute, "If Jonathan Toews really wanted to, he could make a run at the Hart Trophy as the league’s most valuable player. He’s got the offensive skills to create scoring chances, he has the vision to dole out goals from behind the opposing net, and he has the grit to fight for and finish off the greasy goals. If he wanted more points, he could get more points. Of course, the irony is, that would actually make him less valuable to the Blackhawks." When it comes to the argument over who the best NHL captain is, Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins is often neck in neck with Toews for the top spot. The easiest argument in Crosby's favor is that he has won the Hart Trophy twice. Lazerus is right, Toews is fully capable of winning the Hart, but is considered valuable and a great captain due to his team-first mentality, which is proven successful in his three Stanley Cups. Montreal Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban agrees, “He just does what the coaching staff and the organization need him to do. And that makes a player special, because it’s a difficult thing to do. It’s a team-oriented skill that you need to have. It can’t be overlooked. And I think he’s a team-first guy and it shows, it shows in his play.”

2. He is well respected and a class act.

Toews is not only one of the most respected athletes in the NHL, but arguably in the world. Ask a fan of a rival team to give a reason as to why he is not likable, and I guarantee you they won't have a word to say. The most negative comment you will see on a YouTube video of him is along the lines of, "I want to hate him but I can't." When someone dedicates so much time to charities relating to children and not trash-talking rival players. A perfect example of this is when Toews had the perfect opportunity to talk smack about Crosby at the 2013 Blackhawks Convention, but did this instead.

Even when put on the spot with the perfect opportunity to talk down to someone, he chooses to take the high road. The feeling seems to be mutual among other captains, like division rival Dallas Stars' captain Jamie Benn, when Lazerus asked him what he thought made Toews a special player, he said, “It’s just the way he goes about his game. The compete [level] is outstanding. He plays a 200-foot game. He’s one of the best defensive forwards in the league. He pretty much does everything so well; that’s what makes him so special. It’s hard to play against a guy like that. It starts in the face-off dot, and he plays hard for 60 minutes every game, and his teammates follow him.” If you are respected among some of your biggest rivals, you have to be doing something right.

3. He is one of the most successful players in the league, despite his age.

At 22, Toews had an Olympic gold medal, a World Championship, two World Junior Championships, one Stanley Cup and one Conn Smythe trophy. Most athletes do not have this many awards at the end of their career, and this was just the beginning for Toews, and it still is. Since then he has added another Olympic gold medal, two more Stanley Cups, a Selke trophy, Mark Messier Leadership Award and ESPY for Best NHL Player to his long list of achievements (keep in mind that he is only 27 years old). He is on the road to being a hall of famer, and if he keeps up his record he will be among elite names such as Wayne Gretsky and Mario Lemieux. Steve Yzerman, Toews' childhood idol (with whom he shares #19) claims that Toews is "just a better hockey player" than him, even in his prime.

4. He is one of the most skilled players in the NHL.

I can still remember seeing Toews play in person back when I was in high school and being absolutely amazed. It was so much better to watch in person than on TV, and I decided that he was my favorite. To this day, that has not changed, and I take pride in my judgement. Rival players even agree that his skill level is incomparable, as Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang puts, “He does everything well on the ice. He’s a good offensive player, but he’s good on draws; he’s good defensively; he’s responsible. Usually, you can take a chance against a guy that plays only one side of the ice and think he’s not going to come back. He’s always back. He always wants to help his defensemen.” Boston Bruins center Patrice Bergeren agrees, “The way that he’s won in all the levels he’s played and his consistency on the ice and just his work ethic and the way that he competes is definitely something that we should all look at and try to implement that into your game. He’s definitely a great player, and I have a lot of respect for him.”

5. He led his team to three Stanley Cups in six years.

This is the easiest argument to make, but also the most effective. I have seen the same argument used to shut down LeBron James fans when they argue that Michael Jordan is no longer the greatest basketball player of all time (only with six rings instead of three) countless times, and it works every time. Toews has never won the Hart, which can be used as one of the strongest arguments against him, but the Hart Trophy reflects only the player himself, where the Stanley Cup reflects an entire team. For a captain, a Stanley Cup can be seen as more valuable because it is about the entire team, and Toews is a team first player after all. Even Kris Letang believes Toews is "pretty happy with his three Stanley Cups instead of three Hart trophies."

And honestly, who can blame him? Here is to many more Cups to come.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Disney Plus

Millions of musical-lovers around the world rejoiced when "Hamilton," the hip-hop-mixtape-turned-musical harder to get in to than Studio 54, came to Disney Plus.

For those who had the luxury of being able to watch it in person and rewatch it with us mere mortals on our screens, the experience was almost as gripping as sitting feet from Lin-Manuel Miranda himself. From the stunning sets, graceful choreography, witty dialogue, and hauntingly beautiful singing, the experience was one even my musical-averse family felt moved by.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

We Asked You How You Felt About Resuming 'Normal' Activities, And Some Of Your Answers Shocked Us

The New York Times asked 511 epidemiologists when they'd feel comfortable doing "normal" activities again, considering COVID-19. We asked our peers the same thing, for science.

Last month, the New York Times surveyed about 500 epidemiologists asking about their comfort level with certain activities once deemed normal — socializing with friends, going to the doctor, bringing in the mail. That's all well and good for the experts, but they are a very niche group, not the majority of the population. What do "normal" people feel safe doing? In certain states, we've seen how comfortable everyone is with everything (looking at you, Florida), but we wanted to know where Odyssey's readers fell on the comfort scale. Are they sticking with the epidemiologists who won't be attending a wedding for another year, or are they storming the sunny beaches as soon as possible?

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Keto Is All Fun And Games Until You're Undernourished And Almost Pass Out

Keto is just another extension of diet culture that boasts rapid weight loss, but at a steep price.

Photo by LOGAN WEAVER on Unsplash

There has been a Keto diet craze going around in the past couple of years, with many of its followers claiming significant weight loss. With any new, trendy diet claiming miraculous weight-loss, one starts to wonder what exactly is happening behind the curtain. The keto, or ketogenic, diet is a very low-carb, high-fat diet that claims to help the body shift its fuel source from carbs to fat. In the medical community it has been prescribed to patients with uncontrolled epilepsy to reduce the frequency of seizures, but other than that there is little conclusive evidence to other potential benefits.

Keep Reading... Show less

Jennifer Kustanovich is not only the president of the Odyssey at Stony Brook University but is also an illuminating yoga instructor. She's an inspiring proactive leader in the wellness industry. Her expertise in movement expands onto Zumba and high-intensity interval training (HIIT).

On the last day of her in-person class, she gave everyone a way of contacting her and made sure to check up on all her clients. She wanted to ensure that they were doing okay and to remind them that she is always there.

Keep Reading... Show less

These 5 Black Female-Owned Swimwear Brands Are Must-Haves For Your HOTTEST Summer Yet

To all the woman who put their money where their mouth is, lets do two things for the price of one.

The start of summer is always exciting,(especially after an unprecedented pandemic) and people are itching to make this particular summer count. Correction: with the amount gratefulness I have for life at this moment in time I am itching to make this summer count.

But at the same time, in the midst of social justice issues, activism is something that is at the forefront of many people's minds, including mine. With money comes power and buying Black is a way to directly help the marginalized and oppressed while getting something in return.

Keep Reading... Show less

These Are The Black-Owned Restaurants In Chicago You Should Absolutely Be Supporting

Support the movement and your appetite at the same time with these amazing spots.

The Black Lives Matter movement is taking the country by storm to crash down systematic racism and liberate people of color. However, during these changing it can be hard to determine what you can do to make an impact besides reposting Instagram stories and texting petition numbers. Instead, support Black-owned businesses or, more specifically, Black-owned restaurants. Here are some outstanding and underrated Black-owned restaurants in Chicago that can help you support the movement.
Keep Reading... Show less

10 Things To Know About LDRs, From A Couple Separated By The Atlantic Ocean AND A Pandemic

There will be challenges, but more often than not, it's worth it.

Most individuals in relationships have not been able to go on romantic dates in quite a while due to business closures in the wake of the pandemic. Other couples have encountered challenges while seeing each other face to face in the past three months due to coronavirus regulations. Long-distance relationships have unfortunately become a reality for many in this era of global health crises. Western New York native and travel journalist, Chelsea Baron, knows this all too well.

Keep Reading... Show less

5 Easy Summer Mocktail Recipes You Can Make With Items You Probably Already Have On-Hand

Keep these drinks in mind next time you're visiting your local farmer's market — you might want to grab some extra mint and limes.

With Summer 2020 in full swing comes the addition of many fresh fruits and vegetables to brighten up your dinner plate, but also your glass! Farmers markets are my personal favorite place to look for produce that is in season to make fun mocktails with.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments