Thursday, August 19, 2010

He Said/She Said: Who Should Be The Montreal Canadiens Next Captain?

With the 2010-2011 NHL regular season about 50 days away, our He Said/She Said columnists, Willey and Tyg, thought it would be a good time to debate who the next captain of the Montreal Canadiens should be.

It has been said that with so much leadership in the Habs' dressing room, you could throw a stone in there and hit someone with captain potential.

But who will our columnists choose, and who do YOU think should be captain?

Here is what they had to say:

He Said: Who Should Be The Montreal Canadiens Next Captain? by Willey

She Said: Who Should Be The Montreal Canadiens Next Captain? by Tyg

Let them both know what you think about their choices in the comments sections and on Facebook. Join the discussions today!


I don't see how the Habs can go wrong either way.

Gionta was my top pick at the start of last season. By the Olympic break, Gorges had bumped everyone aside and was breathing down Gionta's neck.

Gorges gets his cred from his personal story of determination and beating the odds, his character, and his integrity. Gionta gets his cred from being poised and politically correct in front of a microphone (both qualities I think Jacques Martin likes). His work ethic, and his abilities as a goal scorer also give him a prominence on the team fitting of a captain.

I truly believe that these 2 guys are the only real choices for captain. I don't believe that Markov is a better captain with Gionta and Gorges around. Same for Cammalleri.

Whoever the Habs go with, this should not be a decision that polarizes fans. We're getting a great captain either way you slice it, so long as one of these 2 guys get the 'C'.

Just my 2 cents!

Hey Kyle and thanks for your comment!

Yep, hard to argue with either of these two choices for captain.

For me, I started last season thinking Cammalleri should be captain, moved to Gionta by mid-season, and now think that Gorges has a good shot.

I would, personally, choose Gionta based on experience, attitude, character and track record, but Gorges is also an excellent choice.

Gorges is a ballsy choice, imo, as he is younger than and has less experience than Gionta. If the Habs make that choice, that is a bold move and one that will make Gorges a lifer, imo.

I like Gorges because he was seen a lot AS A HAB. That is invaluable experience too.

At the end of the day, I feel that we a splitting hairs between these two: an experienced veteran or an up and coming stalwart.

I'm good either way!


Thanks for the feedback. I was set to name Komisarek captain before he bailed to Toronto ultimately leaving me with 2 unused No. 8 jerseys collecting dust in my closet.

The second he left I have been thinking Gorges.

I am just one of those fans who is drawn to the work horse player. The guy who doesn't get all the press but who stands up and performs on a nightly basis. My 3 favorite Habs all time are Komisarek, Scotty Thornton and Gorges.

Honestly though when push comes to shove I think the guy who gets the C may in fact be Cammalleri because of his poise and demeanor with the fans and media.

Like you said though, Gorges, Gionta or even Cammalleri I don't think you can go wrong. You know until the "Why don't you speak French" debate arises again.

Kamal and Willey,

I too was dead set with Komi being our next captain, he had a great attitude, and when we saw him behind the bench with Carbo, it just sent chills down my spine, I was sure Komi was our next captain.

However a Captain whom loves his team doesn't bolt to their rival for just shy have half a million more.

I believe that wether the captain is Gionta, Cammalleri, or Gorges you win big time.

They all lead by example, they all lead in the locker room.

Personally In order of whom I think should get it, it should be Gorges, Cammy, Markov, and Gionta. No discredit to Gionta, but I've been on the Cammy bandwagon since his days with Michigan. I know what he brings and he is an epic Locker room buddy (not that Gionta isn't), and hes so dynamic, and explosive on the ice you can't help but draw inspiration from it, hes the type of guy that just irradiates that confidence that every team needs and his attitude much like PK is infectious.

Gionta is a much more serious player but I think he too would bring alot to the table for being the Captain.

The difference between Gionta and Cammy as far as I can see is that Cammy has somehow invested his heart in Montreal, Gionta has too but when you speak to Cammy you just see the appreciation he has for being in Montreal, and the Love for the team and fans written all over his face.

Markov would be my choice simply because of his veteran presence and seniority, he leads by example and although quiet, apparently he doesn't stop cracking jokes amongst the team.

And finally Josh Gorges, this kid was a steal the moment we got him from San Jose for Rivet. I never liked Rivet, and when I found out we got this Gorges kid and a 1st I knew he was going to be one of my personal favorites. Josh is all heart, competes his best, gets better every year, and he is emotionally, and spiritually committed to this team. Josh is the heart and soul of this team and you can see when hes interviewed he just speaks with his heart, and he is just such a role model for the team. When he took Mike Green's slapshot to the head and played the next day to me that was something else. Moen's slash to the face was also inspirational, but Gorges just sucked it up, and wanted to be there for the team, thats what a captain is all about. I heard that he had asked Muller during the playoffs how to lead the team better, and just as himself how can he be a leader more for his team mates.

The way I see it we have 3-4 solid candidates, all of whom deserve the C whole heartedly, but I think of them all Gorges deserves it the most, he wears his heart on his sleeve and is a great guy to talk to.

I agree with you Kyle that its pretty much a Win-Win unless JM and PG decide Andrei Kostitsyn is the next captain.....

I think we have a team-first team, and a great cast to support each other, thats why whoever gets the C will be a great choice.

Although this team seems to have many leaders, my first choice is Cammalleri. He seems to embrace the Habs history, culture, and soaks up the attention he is getting. He's also our best sniper. Bonus too is he's taking french lessons. Plus, many times when I see Habs news or photos, he just seems to be in it. Automatic marketing?

Granted, Gionta's work ethic is second to none he's my #1B choice. ;)

What's odd is in the 10 years Koivu was here, he never took lessons. Now, these new guys like Cammalleri, Gomez, Subban, etc are all taking french lessons. Don't get me wrong, I love Koivu but just seems odd all these guys willing to make the effort in their first year here.

@James Stephan Good stuff, buddy! Yep, ultimately, you can't go wrong with picking a captain and this team is truly overflowing with leadership. While the Habs still have a ways to go before becomming a contender, I think that the leadership that they have will go a long way to getting them there!

@Crimsonium thanks for your comment! Again, I think we are all in agreement that we are basically splitting hairs in choosing between this leadershio group.

Re: the French lessons, I agree that it is great that these guys are taking lessons, but let's not kid ourselves: that is more of a PR move than anything else and, imo, a good idea.

You notice how happy people were to hear that they were taking lessons and then, very quickly, it became a non-issue?

No, I think that this came from up top and the Habs told the new players that from a perception point of view, it would be in thier best interests to at least be shown to be making an effort.

In all honesty, though, apart from saying 'Merci' and 'Bonjour', the next time you'll hear Gomez, for example, say anything meaningful in French will be once his contract has expired.


Thanks for the feedback. I am not going to talk bad about Koivu because I loved the guy.

I will never forgive the disgruntled fans for the treatment Koivu received here. The guy spoke 2 languages and from all accounts spoke some french butwas just too embarassed to speak it.

I am a shy person so can relate to this. I mean I speak some Cantonese but will absoltuely never speak it in front of Cantonese people because I am outright embarassed.

Different situations I know because he is being paid millions of dollars to be the link between the team, management and the fans but none the less the treatment he received here was uncalled for and IMO embarassing.

In regards to the Gomez, Gionta, et al marketing campaign of Je suis....bla bla bla, personally I find this ridiculous. These guys are almost out of necessity being asked to do this just to appease to a select few.

How fickle the average fan must be, to be completely satisfied with a simple Je suis or Merci.

Je suis Mike Cammalleri
Je suis Scott Gomez
Je suis Hal Gill

Je suis tanez

@Kamal Agreed on the french but trying is better than not trying. As mentioned in one interview with Cammalleri, Gomez, and Subban they said its a matter of respect. I don't expect them to talk fluently but its just one extra point for the C as far as the french media goes. ;)

Just to add a point. The next captain will certainly have a more long term contract. So, unless Gorges gets an extension before training, I can't see him getting it.

@Willey Well said, and I agree but I also agree with Crimsonium in that if the PR ploy works—which it has so far—then great!

It suddenly becomes a non-issue.

@Crimsonium Agreed re: long term, however I think it is safe to say that Gorges will (should) be around long term regardless.

@Kamal Panesar I like Gorges a lot, but if he wants too much money, I say let him walk. I'm with Crimsonium, and it's just one of the reasons I prefer Gio. Also agree with @kyleroussel in that the Habs really can't go wrong here with these choices.

@James Stephan you made me spit coffee over my keyboard with the AK captain remark. I'm torn between laughing and being horrified. ;) It's nice that the team has a solid core of players to choose from. I'd rather have this plenthora of choices than having zero candidates really suitable for the position.

@Tyg I don't think Gorges will want too much money/don't think he can command much money because of his lack of offensive stats.

If you do a 6-8 yr deal, for example, I think you can sign him for an average $2MM per season. Maybe even $1.8 Mil per. I think he'd go for something like that and, more importantly, he ain't no Komisarek i.e. he WANTS to stay in MTL.

@Kamal You're probably right and that would be a good deal for Gorges. I just don't see that getting done before the Big C is handed out unfortunately.

@Tyg I agree. I think Gorges will get re-signed this year, or at least I hope/think he should. But I agree that it won't get done BEFORE the captaincy is handed out.

@ everyone re: Gorges

I think it is a pretty safe bet to say that Gorges will not be walking away for nothing. He is an RFA at seasons end with arbitration rights I believe but his lack of offensive production will be his downfall should he pursue this route.

Trying to find a comparible for Gorges is quite difficult to do. Most D-men are either point producers or big defensive monsters who lead the league in hits. How many guys can you name that are just outright reliable defensively but ultimately don't do either of the above?

Personally I think his best comparible is a guy like Andrew Ference. As such a contract in the relam of $2.0-$2.2 million is likely what he will fetch and given what he provides to our club defensively that is IMO almost a bargain.

@Willey Ference....excellent comparison. And I think, depending on the length of the contract, that $2Mil seems about right.

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