The 29th Captain in Canadiens’ History Goes To…

I lied…I do not have a definitive answer.

“A Leader is One Who Knows the Way, Goes the Way, and Shows the Way” -John Maxwell

With Brian Gionta gone, there lies a pile of Habs sweaters…none of which have the letter “C” stitched on. For a spanning period of time, Josh Gorges was “the one” to be named the 29th captain in Montreal history, succeeding Brian Gionta. Following a trade to the Buffalo Sabres, there’s a vacancy that must be filled. It is a role and a prestige that cannot be given to any player, but one who has earned it. There are options, all of which are controversial. Here is the leading candidates to receive that honour:

Photo: Habs Eyes On the Prize

Photo: Habs Eyes On the Prize

Gallagher:

Gallagher is one whom many haven’t quite giving the legitimate thought to, but with all the qualities he possesses, it is worth contemplating. Despite being quite short amongst NHL player standards, he has the type of game-style that is seen amid those of 6’2 and upwards. Gallagher never shy’s away from any play or player, and is well-spoken when needed be. He has passion in his game that is not frequently seen and is well respected by every fan-base. He was put under Gorges wing, learning all the virtues that Gorges portrays. Gorges’ by many would make an ideal captain, so for Gallagher to soak up all of Gorges’ values, he has learned what it is to be a leader. The failing case in Gallagher’s’ strive to be captain, is his age and “younthful” persona. An NHL captain should act like a man, not a boy as well as show maturity, not youth. When Gallagher reaches a more mature age, he can make for a good case to be captain. Now? Most likely not.

Photo: Habsnews.ca

Photo: Habsnews.ca

Markov:

There is no current player on the roster that has been with the Habs as long as Andrei Markov. Who’d believe that a Russian boy with no comprehension of the English language, skipped upon 161 times in 1998, would one day be in talks as a National Hockey League captain? Markov could arguably be considered the most important Canadiens’ player of the past decade, an ideal attribute and focus as to why he should be considered captain. He was just recently resigned to a fresh new 3 year contract, keeping him until the 2016-2017 season. Not only could he retire as an Habitant, but he could very well retire as their captain. There lies two major issues in naming Markov captain. Firstly, Markov is not a chatty Subban-like type of player, a characteristic that every captain must have. The second issue falls hand in hand with the first. Despite living in Canada for approaching two decades, his English is very minimal. When Mike Weaver was asked how he felt about Markov being named the next captain, he replied (most likely in a jokingly manner), “No English”. That being said, Gorges, the one once deemed as the next Habs’ captain, stated how “everyone watches how (Andrei Markov) trains, prepares and plays… That’s what you want from your leader”. This is a valid point, but possibly not enough to overpower his lack of communication ability.

Photo: Montreal Hockey Talk

Photo: Montreal Hockey Talk

Plekanec:

Following Markov, Plekanec has been wearing the tri-colore longer than anyone else on the team. Drafted in the 3rd round of the 2001 NHL Entry Draft, Plekanec is not only one of the most prominent leaders and veterans on the team, but is arguably the nucleus of the entire forward lineup. Plekanec may not be the most skillful player on the Habs, but as Dustin Brown of the LA Kings showed, a captain does not necessarily have to be the most talented player on the team. The Czech Republic native is at a mature age of 31 years old, but if (in theory) he retires an Habitant, then he has a half to full decade remaining on the roster, plenty of time to solidify his spot as the newest captain of the most historic team in NHL history. Captains are in most cases well respected by teammates and opponents, a charm that Plekanec owns. He has only played for one NHL team, and that is the Canadiens. If there is any player that truly knows what it means to be a Canadien, it is Plekanec.

Photo: RDS.ca

Photo: RDS.ca

Subban:

Subban is possibly the most controversial pick to be the newest captain of the Habs. Bar none, he is the most talented player on the Habs. He possesses a level of talent that is extraordinarily scare. He has everything a team wants in a player, which also translates into a good captain: skill, passion, energy and charisma. Along with that, he is a fantastic communicator and plays his best when the team needs him the most. He brings fans out of their seat and is quite possibly the most recognizable face on the team. To boot, he is in his prime age at 25 years old and getting ready to sign (assumably) a massive 8 year contract with the Habs. In that respect, he is not going anywhere, anytime soon. He is a player that one would want to retire on the team he was drafted on. The biggest reasoning for why he may not receive the “C”, is his reputation amongst other teams and fan bases. The adjectives do not have to be mentioned, (since most of them are far-fetched and disrespectful), but a team would want a player that is mostly respected amongst the entire league. This is something that Subban has yet to earn and most likely will unfortunately never earn. Very well respected within the Habs fan-base, it remains a mystery as a Canadiens’ fan as to why Subban is so passionately disliked outside of the niche. Despite this sketchy flaw, he’d make the ideal captain. I’ve always thought that the best captain is the quarterback defencemen who can “do it all”, a feature that Subban fits. He is very well-spoken and possesses a humour that can lighten any mood. . May it be “too much”? That is up for debate. One day he may receive the stitching on the sweater, but as everything lays right now, it is up in the air.

Who do you think will be the newest Habs’ captain? Leave your answers below!

 

 

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