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Toews returning to Blackhawks' lineup after 2-month absence

Len Redkoles / National Hockey League / Getty

Jonathan Toews will return to the Chicago Blackhawks' lineup Saturday against the New Jersey Devils, head coach Luke Richardson said, according to Chicago Sun-Times' Ben Pope.

Toews hasn't played since Jan. 28 due to ongoing symptoms of long COVID and chronic immune response syndrome.

The illnesses forced the Blackhawks captain to miss the entire 2020-21 campaign. He has 14 goals and 28 points in 46 contests this season.

The 34-year-old was noncommittal when asked about possibly retiring following the 2022-23 campaign.

"I'm not near making that decision yet," Toews said Friday, according to Pope. "Either that decision will be clear for me this summer, or I'll be really feeling good and ... ready to train and prepare and get myself to a place where I can play high-level hockey again."

Richardson appeared jovial in welcoming Toews back to the lineup amid Chicago's seven-game losing streak.

"He's like, 'Well, it's not going to be perfect. It might be ugly,' Richardson said, per Pope. "I said, 'We're a little bit ugly right now, so you'll fit right now.'"

The Blackhawks have seven games remaining in the regular season.

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