Jonathan Toews vs. Logan Couture – who is the better fantasy own? Not so fast…
On tap this week is Jonathan Toews versus Logan Couture. Can either one achieve sustained point per game production, or might one or both be in danger of seeing his totals drop in coming seasons? Time to find out, and to pick a winner – Cage Match starts now!
Career Path and Contract Status
Toews was selected third overall by Chicago in 2006, and has among the most impressive hockey resumes of any 26 year old in recent hockey history (two frozen four appearances in his only two college seasons, gold medals in the 2006 and 2007 WJC, the 2007 IIHF World Championship, and the 2010 and 2014 Olympics, plus Stanley Cups in 2010 and 2013).
In fact, the only knock on Toews (other than his "Captain Serious" personality) has been that his real hockey importance exceeds his fantasy value. And while it's true his career points total entering this season was 440 in 484 games (74.5 point full season pace), only once has he managed a point per game season, and that was in lockout-shortened 2012-13 (48 points in 47 games), with 57 points in 59 games in 2011-12 marking his second best season scoring pace.
Couture was drafted ninth overall in 2007, but his first full NHL season wasn't until 2010-11. Like Toews, Couture is seen as imperfect from a fantasy perspective, although in Couture's case it's arguably more a case of circumstances beyond his control, as the Sharks continue to rely on Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau (both now age 35) as top liners, leaving Couture waiting to truly become a "the guy" player.
But even with that happening, Couture's scoring pace has increased in each of his full seasons – from 56 points in 79 games in 2010-11 (58 point full season pace), to 65 in 80 in 2011-12 (66 point pace), to 54 in 65 last season (68 point pace). Plus, if we put those seasons side-by-side with Toews' first three, they're fairly comparable (191 points in 222 games for Toews,