Jonathan Toews' Injury Will Not Derail Chicago Blackhawks Stanley Cup Destiny

Donald WoodFeatured ColumnistJune 24, 2013

BOSTON, MA - JUNE 19: Jonathan Toews #19 of the Chicago Blackhawks looks on late in the game against the Boston Bruins in Game Four of the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on June 19, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

Chicago Blackhawks center and captain Jonathan Toews was injured during his team’s 3-1 victory Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final when he was hit from behind by Boston Bruins defender Johnny Boychuk.

But that will not stop Chicago’s destiny of winning the championship on Monday.

The Blackhawks lead the series 3-2 over the Bruins, and with Game 6 Monday night at TD Garden in Boston, Chicago will close the door on the series whether Toews plays a role in the outcome of the game or not.

Toews was hurt late in the second period of Game 5, and while he was able to avoid heading to the locker room immediately, he did not play in the third period despite being on the bench. As devastating as losing their captain was, the Blackhawks took care of business and won the game.

While Chicago head coach Joel Quenneville originally listed Toews as day-to-day following the injury, he told Tracey Myers of CSNChicago Sunday that his star center was improving and likely to play in Game 6:

For the naysayers that still have doubts about Toews’ availability on Monday, Myers is reporting on the captain’s game-day routine with the team:

It will be great news for the Blackhawks if Toews is ready to go, but just as the team was able to win in Game 5 without the captain in the third period, Chicago could do it again in Game 6 if needed.

Toews hasn’t been playing his best offensive hockey in the postseason, only posting 12 points (two goals and 10 assists) in 22 games. However, his 21:37 of ice team makes him a cog in the neutral zone, the defensive zone and on special teams.

With different role players each stepping up in Toews' absence to fill the void he left in the third period, it’s clear that the Blackhawks have the depth and talent to close out the Bruins in six games.

Even if the upper-body injury limits Toews offensively, he has proven to be much more valuable on the forecheck during the playoffs.

Toews may not be 100 percent, but with a chance to clinch the Stanley Cup, nothing will keep the captain from hitting the ice Monday night.