Justine Galo: What makes a good captain?

First blog of the upcoming season and Roberto Luongo has decided to relinquish the captaincy. Was it a good decision? I suppose it is, but time will tell.  However, I do believe it’s probably the best thing for the team and for the play of Roberto Luongo in the long run.

It takes a big man to take the responsibility of a team and shoulder leadership, it’s not an easy job. It takes an even bigger man to own up to his limitations.  Roberto Luongo did just that.  Now that he is no longer the captain, the biggest question in Vancouver is who will be his heir apparent? Should it really matter to us fans?

On the CanucksCorner.com forum, there were some interesting opinions of the type of Canucks captain fans would want to see.  Which of the current team members exemplifies a good captain?

Unfortunately, my choice to succeed Lu, is no longer a Canuck. Willie Mitchell would have been my prime candidate.  Now there is the great debate between Hank and Kesler and other honourable mentions.

Henrik Sedin has done what no other Canuck has done and that’s win the Art Ross and Hart trophies as the league’s MVP. As much as I could go on about how good of a candidate he would be, I believe Canucks Corner poster, DonCherry4PM said it best.  Others have voiced that Ryan Kesler would be a better choice, due to his tenacity, his style of play and his vocalization with the media. After those two, there were other names thrown in,but the  ‘dog fight’ is between Hank and Kes.  Both bring goods to the table, both have impressive resumes, but who has that leadership quality to shoulder the responsibility for this team?

For me, it doesn’t really matter who the fans think (I know I will get roasted for this) should be the captain.  It only matters who the team thinks to be their next captain and if that is in sync, maybe our noses (as fans) won’t be so bent out of shape.

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  1. Cornuck says

    The other point is that Luongo will have no excuses this season. No Olympics, no Captaincy, a full time goalie coach, a blue chip backup who ‘should’ lighten his workload, a good travel schedule for the season and what could be the deepest D in hockey.

    Whoever ends up Captain will no affect the team as much as Luongo’s play. I also don’t see why Henrik has the hype over Daniel.

  2. Justine Galo says

    For Luongo, it’s put up or shut up time. No distractions, just do your job.

    I just feel as long as the guys in the locker room and on the ice are in sync, it will be a good year.

  3. ERIC S.L. says

    Well I do beleive that Kesler would be a better capitain. Even if some time is intensity and emotion comes in the game and make him react inapropriatly, I would ratter have him, is determination and insatiable desire to win, have an effect on the team.

    for sure, sedin is a good player, he certainly got stability, agility and skill, I’m sure he got impact on the others players, but is he a model ? does he stand for his team-mate? humm, I didn’T seen that yet.

    Kesler on the other end, He show by example, he got charisma and go ahead to defend is colour. More over, he proved that he raised is game , when it does matter.

    Kesler as Capitain, Sedin remain assistant.

    Loungo, will do his job, even if is performance is paramount , no team should depend on the performance of only one man…and a team should count on the inconditional support of their fans, wich I didn’t seen in vancouver yet

  4. says

    I don’t agree that ‘it takes a big man to shoulder leadership” in the game of hockey. You either are a leader, or you’re not, it’s a personality trait. I think this ‘distraction’ of being a Captain of the Canucks is media infused garbage…and a good excuse for the team to discipline Roberto for some shaky past seasons (playoffs especially).

    My guess is they give Kes the “C’, although I’m not sure he’d be MY pick.

    • says

      Kesler will need to check his emotions somewhat to be a good captain. His reputation as a hot head and a bit of a ref ‘whiner’ precedes him.

      It doesn’t take a big man to lead the team? Maybe maybe not, but it doesn’t really what us fans think, we can blow opinions from all directions as much as we want. It’s the guys in the room and in the offices that make that decisions, and personally, I’d probably support whatever choice they make.

  5. dondo says

    I belive giving Henrik the C was a mistake — the need is for the captain to be able to motivate a team, go out there and fight, or gut it out to lift his team. Smyl did this, Linden did this — Naslund did not , Messier was a waste of skin and Henrik is not that kind of motivator. He’s a nice guy who has amazing skill, but a leader? a firebrand? not in a million years.

    It was a popular choice and the wrong choice and the team currently has no focus or leadership right now and it shows. Winning 10 of 12 periods means squat when you have lost three of four games.

    Sure its not time to panic, but the effort and drive are just not there and their new captain will not be able to change that, he’s just not that kind of player. Kesler has leadership qualities is a go to player and willing to do what he has to do to motivate. Luongo was an awful choice and it distracted him and the team during crunch time. Henrik will be another soft captain who will not be able to bring his team out of the doldrums if they under-go an extended slump.

    It was also a management decision and not a team one and that is never good.

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