Jonathan Toews (born April 29, 1988) is a Canadian professional ice hockey centre and team captain for the Chicago Blackhawks of the National Hockey League (NHL). He was selected by the Blackhawks with the third overall pick in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. He joined the Blackhawks in 2007–08 and was nominated for the Calder Memorial Trophy as NHL rookie of the year. The following season, he was named team captain, becoming the third youngest captain in NHL history at the age of 20. Toews competes internationally for Team Canada and has won gold medals at the 2005 World U-17 Hockey Challenge, 2006 and 2007 World Junior Championships, 2007 World Championships and 2010 Winter Olympics, a tournament in which he was named Best Forward.
Toews was selected first overall in the 2003 WHL Bantam Draft by the Tri-City Americans, but chose instead to play high school hockey, eventually attending Shattuck-St. Mary’s, a boarding school in Faribault, Minnesota, during 2004-2005. Toews scored 110 points in 64 games in his only season with the team, before moving on to play college hockey at the University of North Dakota.
Toews played two seasons at North Dakota, compiling 85 points (40 goals, 45 assists), a plus-38 rating and a 56.7% faceoff winning percentage in 76 games. He helped the Fighting Sioux reach the NCAA Frozen Four in both 2006 and ’07. Toews registered 39 points as a freshman and earned Rookie of the Week honors twice. He helped North Dakota capture the Broadmoor Cup as WCHA champions and also was named West Regional MVP after tallying five points.
In 2007–08, he opted out of the final two years of college hockey to debut with the Blackhawks after signing a 3-year, entry level contract on May 16, 2007. He scored his first NHL goal on his first shot in his first game on October 10 against the San Jose Sharks. He then recorded the second-longest point-scoring streak to start an NHL career, registering a point in each of his first 10 games (5 goals, 5 assists). On January 1, 2008, Toews sprained his knee in a game against the Los Angeles Kings. Despite missing 16 games from the injury, Toews led all rookies in goal-scoring and finished third in points. Toews finished second in team scoring behind fellow rookie Patrick Kane. Toews and Kane battled all season for the lead in team and rookie scoring before Toews went down to injury. The two were both nominated for the Calder Memorial Trophy along with Washington Capitals forward Nicklas Bäckström; teammate Kane was named rookie of the year over Toews.
Following his successful rookie campaign, Toews was named team captain of the Blackhawks on July 18, 2008. At 20 years and 79 days, he became the third youngest team captain in NHL history, behind Vincent Lecavalier of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Toews had previously been named an alternate captain in December 2007, during the 2007–08 season. In the subsequent season, he was voted as a starter, along with teammates Patrick Kane and Brian Campbell, for the 2009 NHL All-Star Game in Montreal. Shortly thereafter, on February 27, 2009, he recorded his first career NHL hat trick against the Pittsburgh Penguins at home in a 5-4 overtime loss. He finished the 2008–09 season with 69 points in 82 games, helping the Blackhawks to their first post-season appearance since 2002. Toews added 13 points in 17 playoff games as the Blackhawks advanced to the Western Conference Finals, where they were eliminated by the Detroit Red Wings in five games.
Less than a month into the 2009–10 season, Toews was sidelined with concussion-like symptoms after receiving an open-ice hit from defenceman Willie Mitchell in a 3–2 loss to the Vancouver Canucks on October 21, 2009. Toews had just received a pass when Mitchell was just leaving the penalty box to catch Toews with his head down. Toews and fellow teammates Duncan Keith and Patrick Kane agreed to contract extensions in early December 2009. Kane and Toews have agreed to a contract extensions of 5 years making about 6.5 Million each season.
In 2005, Toews captained Canada West at the World U-17 Hockey Challenge to a gold medal. He scored the game-winning goal in a 3-1 win over Canada Pacific in the championship game. He finished with 12 points, first in tournament scoring, and was named tournament MVP.
In his draft year, he competed on Team Canada’s under-20 team at the 2006 World Junior Championships as the youngest player on the team. Toews tallied 2 assists during the tournament, both against Norway in preliminary play, as Canada defeated Russia in the gold medal game 5-0.
In 2007, he earned a second straight World Junior gold medal. In the semi-final game against the U.S., Toews scored three times in the shootout to advance to the final. With 7 points, Toews led Team Canada in scoring and was named to the Tournament All-Star Team with teammate Carey Price. Shortly after his gold medal win, Toews was honored by his hometown AHL team, the Manitoba Moose, on February 3, 2007, as he was presented with an honorary jersey for his tournament efforts.
That same year, Toews also made his senior international debut at the 2007 World Championships and recorded 7 points in 9 games competing against mostly professional players after coming off just his second year of college hockey. Team Canada earned gold over Finland 4-2 in the championship game. In doing so, he became the first Canadian to win a World Junior championship and a World Championship in the same year. On June 29, 2007, Toews was awarded the Order of the Buffalo Hunt, an award given by the Province of Manitoba in honour of sporting achievements, for his play in the junior and senior world championships.
On December 30, 2009, Toews was selected to play for Team Canada at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. He was named to the squad along with Blackhawks teammates Brent Seabrook and Duncan Keith. He ended the tournament with a team-leading eight points. His seven assists tied with Pavol Demitra of Slovakia for the tournament lead. His lone goal of the tournament opened the scoring in Canada’s 3–2 overtime win in the gold medal game against the United States. As a result, he was awarded Best Forward and tournament all-star team honours.
- World U-17 Hockey Challenge MVP – 2005
- WCHA Rookie of the Week – twice in 2005-06
- NCAA West Regional MVP – 2006
- World Junior All-Star Team – 2007
- Provost of the Hunt, Manitoba Order of the Buffalo Hunt – 2007
- Nominated for the Calder Memorial Trophy – 2008
- NHL All-Star Game – 2009 (starter)
- All-star selection of the 2010 Olympic hockey tournament
- 2010 Winter Olympics – Best Forward
Toews was born to Bryan Toews, a German-Canadian electrician for the University of Manitoba, and Andrée-Gilbert, a French-Canadian from Québec who is the managing director & finance expert for a large credit union in the Winnipeg region. Toews’ younger brother, David Toews, also attended Shattuck-St. Mary’s and began his freshman year at the University of North Dakota in 2008–09. He was drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks in the 1st round, 3rd overall, in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft.
In January 2007, Toews and former teammate T.J. Oshie received alcohol-related citations for being minors in a Grand Forks tavern. Toews and Oshie pled guilty to the charges. The two were later placed on probation, and ordered to perform community service.