The Chicago Blackhawks announced on Tuesday that captain Jonathan Toews will miss the start of the 2020-21 NHL season because of an undisclosed illness.
The 32-year-old Toews said in a statement through the team: “This off-season, I’ve been experiencing symptoms that have left me feeling drained and lethargic. I am working with doctors so I can better understand my condition. Until I can get my health back to a place where I feel I can perform at an elite level and help my team, I will not be joining the Blackhawks for training camp. I do not have a timetable for when I will rejoin the team. I am extremely disappointed, but it wouldn’t be fair to myself or my teammates to attempt to play in my current condition.” The Blackhawks are set to report to training camp Jan. 3, with the 2020-21 season to begin 10 days later.
In the statement, Toews thanked the Blackhawks’ coaching staff and front office for their understanding and addressed fans: “To Blackhawks fans, I will continue to do whatever I can to get back on the ice and return to play the game I love for the team I love. I will not be making any further comment at this time and ask everyone to please respect my privacy as I focus on my health and recovery.”
Toews has been the first-line center of three Stanley Cup-winning teams in Chicago. He recorded 60 points in 70 games last season and has earned at least 50 points in every season except one in his 13-year NHL career.
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