Saturday, April 20, 2024

Captain Serious Set To Play His Final Game In A Blackhawks Sweater


The longest-tenured captain in Chicago sports history will play his final game in the United Center Thursday night.

After 16 years playing for the Blackhawks, including 15 as their captain on the ice, GM Kyle Davidson announced that Jonathan Toews would not be resigned as an unrestricted free agent this summer.

While it’s uncertain whether Toews will hang up his skates for good after Thursday’s game, if he does continue his career, it won’t be in a Blackhawks sweater. Davidson announced the move Thursday morning:

“I’ve had a number of conversations with Jonathan throughout the season about his future with the Blackhawks, and recently, we had the difficult conversation that we won’t be re-signing him this offseason. Tonight will be his final game as a Blackhawk. It was an incredibly difficult decision to make, but I told him that wherever he ends up playing next, he’ll be a Blackhawk forever.”

– Kyle Davidson

The news wasn’t unexpected, as No. 19 has been open in the past few months about the likelihood of his time in Chicago ending. He cited his body’s longevity and his contract as possible reasons. The 8-year, $84M deal he signed in 2014 will end this summer.

Davidson opened his end-of-season media availability Thursday morning by announcing the news, giving fans the opportunity to pay tribute to their captain one last time. He commented on how important it was for the team to provide the proper sendoff for both Toews and Blackhawks fans.

If Thursday night’s game is in fact his final one in the NHL, he certainly doesn’t owe the league, the Blackhawks, or their fans anything more. He’ll enter his final game in the Blackhawks sweater fifth in franchise history in games played (1,066), sixth in goals (371), and sixth in points (882). He brought three Stanley Cups to Chicago and filled his trophy case with the Conn Smythe Trophy, Selke Trophy, and the Mark Messier Leadership Award. The Olympic gold medalist will forever be thought of as the Blackhawks’ captain, even if he moves on to another franchise before retiring.

The end of Jonathan Toews’ time in Chicago represents the end of the championship era for the Blackhawks. He was the final piece of the roster that won Stanley Cups in 2010, 2013, and 2015, signaling a true fresh start for the franchise.

Toews’ Blackhawks career will officially conclude with the Blackhawks’ final game of the 2022-23 campaign in the United Center against the Philadelphia Flyers. The game is somewhat symbolic, as the Flyers were the team Toews beat to win his first Stanley Cup.

As one of the greatest Blackhawks in the history of the franchise, it’s great for Toews to be able to get the recognition in the UC that he deserves one last time. There’s no doubt Thursday night’s game will be a loud one, as fans have the opportunity to say “thank you” to their captain.


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Apr 13, 2023 1:31 pm


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