The Chicago Blackhawks are not a great hockey team. They got off to a hot start with a nice winning streak but they are now starting to come back down to earth and play the way that their roster suggests that they should.
One player having an incredibly nice bounce-back year, however, is the captain Jonathan Toews. He was making his return from a serious health issue last season and never was really able to get going. Now, he is healthy and playing great.
There are a lot of stats to look at that suggest that Toews is playing very well. He leads the Blackhawks with seven goals and has an additional three assists for ten points. Those ten points tie him with Max Domi for the second most on the team (they trail Patrick Kane who has 12).
One stat that people might not realize is incredible for Toews right now is the faceoff win percentage. Toews leads the National Hockey League going into Wednesday with a remarkable 64.29 percent.
Jonathan Toews is having a really good year so far for the Chicago Blackhawks.
He is just ahead of some really great centers like Ryan Johansen, Patrice Bergeron, and Chandler Stephenson. All of these guys may rotate who is leading the league on any particular night but Toews should be right in the mix all season long.
This isn’t the end-all-be-all stat but it is nice to start a play with the puck if you can. There are some analytics that suggests that winning faceoffs is a bit overrated because the good teams find the puck anyway but it is easier to produce if you begin with possession.
The Blackhawks don’t have anyone even close to Toews in this department so it is really important that they have a guy like this. When they are up one or down one late in the game, they can throw Toews out there for a big draw and be confident in him to get it done.
Jonathan Toews might also be increasing his trade value by being so dominant in the faceoff dot in addition to his awesome goal-scoring.
A Stanley Cup contender that is looking for someone to come in and win some draws for them as a depth center might seriously consider making a trade for the Chicago captain. There are other things to work out like his salary retention and a return package but it could happen.
You never know how this season is going to end up going but Toews is certainly having a great year up to this point. Winning a majority of his faceoffs (and leading the league in that department) is really helping his game.