Oh Captain Max Captain: Max Pacioretty Named 29th Captain In Canadiens History

The newest captain of the Canadiens: Max Pacioretty (Photo: Canadiens)

The newest captain of the Canadiens: Max Pacioretty
(Photo: Canadiens)

The questions have been –at long last– put to bed.  Four aces will remain as Brendan Gallagher joins the “A” ranks amidst P.K. Subban, Tomas Plekanec and Andrei Markov but one man will stand alone with the captaincy to his name starting with the 2015-16 season.

 

Max Pacioretty will probably be the first to say that being named captain will not change how he plays in the least, just like everyone else will say that a new letter or no letter at all will make no difference in anything that they do.  A vote from the team is probably the way to go with captaincy votes as they are essentially telling management “this is the guy that we most respect” with their input and it should say something for a guy that everyone hopes will be healthy and in the lineup for the season opener.

 

This is a guy that is going to be a 100% formulaic team captain.  Max ensures that he is clean shaven and properly dressed every day before leaving the house; in fact, he is likely the kind of guy that would do garden work in a suit.  He claims the goal of wanting to set an example for younger people and that he hopes to incorporate everything that he has taken in with his experiences of the Saku Koivu ceremony and the loss of Jean Beliveau.  In the way of modeling himself after those before him, Pacioretty has chosen a pair of perennial leaders and outstanding human beings.

 

One criticism can be answered with an upside in contrast; Max has not always been the steadiest of playoff performers but he has often shown up when most needed and has been the guy to close out a series or two off of his tape.  In fact, Max Pacioretty has had either the series winning goal or the empty net insurance tally in the last three playoff series that the Canadiens have come out victorious in.

 

He says all the right things at exactly the right times which certainly helped his chances and possibly earned an extra vote or two but from an outside perspective, monotone Max may not be as compelling to listen to as someone less likely to provide cliche answers such as P.K. Subban.  With P.K. carrying an alternate spot, though, he is certain to see his share of time in front of the camera so this point may be nullified as quickly as it can be made.

 

Does Pacioretty thrive in huge game scenarios or high pressure situations the way that P.K. does? Does he sacrifice himself and throw caution to the wind the same way that Gally does? The answer to both of those is no but he brings his own set of highlight features and personal traits to the dance.  What Mad Max does possess is exactly what he needs to do his job: athleticism and ability on the ice and professionalism and maturity off the ice.

 

There was no incorrect decision to make here.  Now named a leader among leaders, Max Pacioretty will have plenty of support in his role on the Canadiens path to adding to their dynasty.  The most successful teams and the best captains are those surrounded by leadership.  The last team that Marc Bergevin essentially built is one that has three Stanley Cups in the span of five years; one small attribute of that is when Captain Serious gets mad, Jonathan Toews finds himself quickly calmed by a few simple words from Duncan Keith or Brent Seabrook and the same happening in turn.

 

If the Montreal Canadiens want to find themselves with the opportunity to do as Marc Bergevin boasts to be his goal in winning not just one but multiple Stanley Cups, this is just another step along the way.  Max Pacioretty has been named the guy that will touch the cup first and he will see plenty of support along the way.

 

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