Toews enjoyed another solid (yet unspectacular) campaign in 2016-17, tallying 58 points (21 goals, 37 assists) and 199 shots on goal in 72 games. The 29-year-old pivot is indubitably one of the best two-way forwards in the NHL, but his focus on the defensive side of the game prevents him from reaching his potential as a 70-plus-point scorer. However, the 2006 first-round pick had two of his most productive seasons in recent memory while skating with Brandon Saad in 2013-14 and 2014-15, and the Blackhawks decided to bring Saad back into the fold for the 2017-18 campaign via a trade with Columbus, likely with the intention of adding him to Toews’ line in hopes of sparking Captain Serious’ offensive production. If Toews is able to reestablish his chemistry with Saad, he could return to form as a 65-point scorer, making him a rock-solid option in all fantasy formats.
Toews is one of the best two-way forwards in the game today – perhaps the best all by himself. It's nearly impossible for other players to knock him off the puck, and he has the offensive talent to put it in the back of the net in the biggest of moments. However, Toews' dedication to being a diligent defender keeps him from reaching his elite fantasy potential. If the 6-foot-2 center wasn’t so dedicated to his play on both ends of the ice, he might be able to reach – and perhaps even surpass – his 85-point upside. Captain Serious' dedication to his role as a two-way forward has helped earn his team three Stanley Cups in the past seven seasons, and that isn't going to change anytime soon. In fantasy, Toews brings to the table something many other players do not: set-and-forget production for his owners. The 2006 first-round pick has only missed a combined three games over the past two seasons, and he can always be expected to end up in the neighborhood of 60 points. Although Toews shouldn't be taken over any proven point-per-game snipers, he'll undoubtedly be a highly valuable addition to any fantasy owner's roster this season.
How valuable is Toews? Well, he’s one of the best two-way players in the game today, if not the best. He’s an incredible leader, a talented offensive player, a diligent defender, and a possession beast -- he’s a franchise cornerstone and will be that way for another decade. But how does that translate into fantasy? We’ll be blunt -- imperfectly. He’ll never reach his 90-point upside because of that commitment to two-way hockey. His highest point total in a season was 76 (80 games), and he’s averaged 67 points in his last two campaign. That’s valuable, but it doesn’t make him elite. What Toews does provide is lock-and-ignore production in every format -- roto, points, head-to-head, daily, dynasty…anything you can dream up. And owning him and his stability allows you to reach for high-risk guys. Just don’t take him over a bona fide point-per-game sniper.
The captain put up stellar numbers again last season, accruing 28 goals and 40 assists in 76 games. He is without a doubt one of the best centers in the NHL, but it might be a stretch for him to exceed the 32 goals and 44 assists he put up in 2010-11. Even if he fails to post elite numbers, Toews can be counted upon for 65 to 70 points and a strong plus/minus rating, thanks to the stable of talent surrounding him.
Toews averaged about a point-per-game during the lock-out shortened season (23 goals, 25 assists), but most hockey observers believe he could deliver 100 points in a season if he'd only just focus on the offensive zone. But that's not Toews, who reads the game with the very best and takes his own-zone responsibilities seriously. He's an elite center who should be off the board right after Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, and feel free to count on 35 goals and 85 points. He's one of the best.
Toews will be looking to rebound this season after injuries hurt him during his 2011-12 campaign. A concussion limited him to just 59 games last year, but he was in the middle of a goal-scoring outburst when he went down and still finished the season with 29. We are a bit concerned by the concussions -- that wasn't his first. But there is no doubt that if he stays away from injuries, he rebound to his usual dominating self. And that's a guarantee of 30 goals, as many points as games, great plus-minus and power-play production.
While the Blackhawks endured a down season by their standards in 2010-11, Toews had the best campaign of his short, four-year career. The captain tallied 32 goals and a career-high 44 assists. Additionally, he had the best plus/minus rating of his career at plus-25. Toews is sure to continue as one of the best forwards in the league. Chicago has added some tough guys to the roster, including enforcer Daniel Carcillo, giving Toews some extra protection this coming season.
By default, Toews often shares the limelight with Patrick Kane, though the former player prefers to let his game do the talking. Chicago fans were happy to see Toews take home a little extra hardware for his stellar postseason play. In addition to winning the Stanley Cup with the 'Hawks, he also wrapped his mitts around the Conn Smythe Trophy for being the playoff's Most Valuable Player. Oh, the regular season, you ask? That was fine, too, as Toews gave his fantasy owners 25 goals, 43 assists, and a plus/minus rating of 22. Expect about the same from No. 19 in 2010-11, but this time with even more consistent production.
Patrick Kane seems to get more headlines, but Toews might be the better of the two. Toews played in every game last season and deposited 34 goals along with 35 assists. With the addition of another weapon in Marian Hossa, Toews appears in position to climb another rung up the ladder in his third year. The best aspects of his game are shooting (career 17.1 shooting percentage) and skating, but Toews is fast becoming one of the league's best pivots with a game that is strong at both ends of the rink (plus-12 last season).
Toews missed 18 games during his first season, but was still able to lead NHL rookies with 24 goals. His 30 assists ranked third-highest on the team and his 54 points tied him for third most with Robert Lang. Toews was named the team captain this summer, making him the third-youngest player to earn that distinction in the history of the NHL. Only Vincent Lecavalier and Crosby became team captains at a younger age. Expect Toews to wear the captain's letter with a pride and urgency that will only expedite his rise to the elite tier of centers in the NHL. His ceiling is only limited by his ferocity on the ice. It will be exciting to see what Toews can do with a full 2008-09 season.
Toews is a complete player who is terrific with the puck, has a great feel for the game, and is an extremely hard worker. He is the top prospect on a Chicago team that has an absolutely loaded pipeline and since the Blackhawks have the number one overall pick in this year's draft, the system is going to get even stronger. Should Toews decide he wants to leave school, there should be a spot waiting for him on the Blackhawks this season.
The third overall selection in the 2006 NHL draft decided to go back to the University of North Dakota for the 2006-07 season. It appears he might even stay there for the 2007-08 season, but stay tuned.
Toews (pronounced "Taaves") is the kind of guy who makes everyone else around him better. This kid is ultra-competitive and is already a well-rounded, two-way player. At 6'2" and near 200 lbs, he no pushover either and isn't afraid to force his nose toward the net. Good hands, good brains, good prospect. He's among the elite of the 2006 draft.