I’m sure you all remember the photo of the 2007 Vancouver Canucks playoff team that were passed around the internet shortly after they made an early exit in after the 2nd round. It featured a photoshopped Canucks team photo that left one player in the middle of the bench all by himself. The player was their best player in the Playoffs, and the main reason they made it to the 2nd round. The player was Roberto Luongo.
Well, now it’s official. The best player on the Vancouver Canucks has been named their Captain. Though he won’t be able to wear the ‘C’ on his jersey because of NHL rules, Luongo will be the Captain of the Vancouver Canuck. I guess it makes some kind of sense that he will be their new Captain after Markus Naslund, Brendan Morrison and Trevor Linden all left (or retired) after last season. The ‘nucks don’t really have much leadership left on the ice or in the dressing room. Short of them going out and poaching Ryan Smyth from Colorado, they don’t really have much choice.
It will be interesting to watch how it all works itself out during the season, though. According to TSN.ca there have only been 6 other Captain/goalies in NHL history. A quick Wikipedia search shows that Luongo will be the 5th goalie to be awarded the ‘C’ (but not be permitted to wear it).
I’m sure Luongo feels proud to be the team captain. But he’s also got to be pretty pissed off about where the Canucks have gone since he came to them 2 years ago. They were a top contender in the NW division, and have now regressed further back than Luongo’s Florida Panthers ever were. If I was him, I’d be saying, “When is somone actually going to give me a team?”