Following one of the most improbable comebacks ever, coaches and teammates couldn’t say enough about Jonathan Toews.
The Chicago captain — who was knocked out of Game 5 after taking a series of hits — proved to be a major catalyst in Monday’s stunning 3-2 win over the Bruins, scoring the opening goal and assisting on the second as the ‘Hawks won their second Stanley Cup in the last four seasons.
“Monster game,” was how head coach Joel Quenneville described the performance. “The bigger the game, the bigger the setting, you know what you’re going to get from Jonathan Toews.
“He just knows how to play hockey.”
Patrick Kane — named the Conn Smythe winner as MVP of the playoffs — deferred to Captain Serious as the engine that runs the Blackhawks machine.
“He’s a great player,” Kane said. “He’s played big in a lot of big games. He won the Conn Smythe our last Playoffs and was awesome in that Olympic gold medal game and made some big plays tonight, a big goal, a big pass to Bickell to tie it up, and he’s just a competitor.
“That’s really all you can say about Jonathan Toews is he’s a competitor, and he leads the team in the right way, and we all follow.”
That Toews was even able to play in Game 6 is something in itself. Quenneville told reporters following the game his captain had his “bell rung” in Game 5, presumably on this hit from Boston defenseman Johnny Boychuk:
Toews shook off whatever was ailing him, though, to put forth another signature Stanley Cup effort.
“Whether he’s productive or not, he absorbs a lot of their big minutes from their matchup guys and he never gets outscored,” Quenneville said. “He plays the way you want a hockey player to play.”