Toews after missing season: This is a fresh start for me and the team

Dave Sandford / National Hockey League / Getty

Few are looking forward to this season more than Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews, who didn't play in 2020-21.

"It feels really good to be back," he told reporters as the Blackhawks opened their training camp on Thursday, according to The Athletic's Scott Powers. "It's a brand new group in so many ways. It's a fresh start for the other guys, but for me especially."

The 33-year-old dealt with chronic immune response syndrome last season. The veteran was ruled out indefinitely in December 2020, saying at the time he was feeling "drained and lethargic."

Now Toews is reentering the mix alongside several new faces, including goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, defenseman Seth Jones, and forward Tyler Johnson.

Though Toews said he would love to play in the Blackhawks’ season opener, the center doesn't want to get ahead of himself since he's not yet "firing on all cylinders."

"I'm just taking it one day at a time, that's all I can really handle right now," he said. "I kind of got into the whole 'goals vs. expectations' thing and I had to think about that for a minute, but that’s my goal. I think I just have to keep being patient."

Toews has spent his entire career in Chicago. He's notched 815 points over 943 contests.

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Toews after missing season: This is a fresh start for me and the team
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