At some point during Michael Jordan's championship years, people began talking more about his mental toughness than his physical abilities.

There was some merit to the shift in discussion. The man was competitive to a fault. Who else could come down with bubonic plague in the morning and score 50 that night? Not Jordan, but you get the idea.

That he was more athletically blessed than anybody else just didn't cut it in the legend-making department. He had to be more driven, more competitive, more cutthroat. Otherwise, we were left with ­someone of this earth. How much fun is there in measuring Clark Kent for a suit instead of a cape?

The same sort of thing has happened with the Blackhawks' Jonathan Toews, only in reverse. We constantly hear about his mental toughness. We hear he's as serious and somber as a law-school library. We hear that teammates can't help but follow him, the way they've been following him since the Hawks named him captain at 20.