JONATHAN TOEWS IS RECOVERING AND SAID TO BE RETURNING NEXT YEAR, PRAISE BE

Live look at my heart

This is the best news I've heard maybe all year. This Toews thing has been exceptionally scary because nobody knew anything and the rumors flying around made you not even care about hockey. You just want this guy, who is universally praised as a good one, to live a long and happy life. Now that appears to be on the table AND he might be feeling so good that he will triumphantly return to the lineup next year. That is obviously great news. The Blackhawks desperately need him. He is the lynchpin in the lineup. One of two true centers on the team. A guy you can pencil in and know you're getting effort and accountability and 200 ft of strong play. I've loved everything about watching him play throughout his career and seeing milestones for Kane without 19 right there with him was gut wrenching. He deserves all those same moments. The same accolades. The same applause. The same happiness and healthiness in his life. We've all missed him

As is tradition, this news broke yesterday after we recorded Redline Radio. Eddie made the point that it was nearly impossible to think about the future in any concrete way until you know the long term status of your captain, top 6 center, and $10.5M man. Now…we can a little. A lot can change, but the Hawks can kind of sort of start to map out the lineup for next year now that 19 is coming back. 

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And that…is about it. Still need at least 5 more forwards. Maybe Vinnie is back, I'd like that. Maybe Reichel is ready for the NHL…that'd be great. Evan Barratt has been productive at the AHL level. Could he be ready for NHL action in the bottom 6 if he has a good summer? I'd prefer to never see Nylander again but you know he will get a shot. Connolly if he isn't picked in the expansion draft. Are they close to being a championship team? No, probably not. Are they a playoff team with our captain back…there's a gleam, men. Let's get the gleam. 

We had a great ep of Redline Radio talking about this, the Cubs, and the Sox with our midwest friend Joey Mulinaro. Listen to the full ep here