NHL: 5 Great Current Captains
Every NHL team has one: the one player who embodies the heart and soul of his franchise.
They can do it all. They can score, hit, fight, assist. They know when to yell at their teammates or when to leave them be.
They can pump them up or call them out. They make everyone around them better. They are NHL captains.
In the following slides I give you some of my favourite current NHL captains and why they make the cut.
Dustin Brown: LA Kings
Dustin Brown was the 13th overall pick in the 2003 entry draft. He has spent his entire eight-year career with the Kings.
Most recently he lead the team to the Stanley Cup finals where they defeated the Devils to win the first Stanley Cup in franchise history.
Brown is the second American captain to ever win the Cup.
He is noted for his physical style of play, and he leads by example whenever he's on the ice.
Ryan Callahan: New York Rangers
Ryan Callahan isn't the flashiest captain in the league. Not even close.
But he does everything well. He can score evidenced by his 29 goals and 25 assists in 76 games this past year.
He can hit, and there are highlights of him hitting Matt Gilroy and Jesse Winchester 14 seconds apart.
He puts his body on the line and block shots, and you can always expect him to stand up for a teammate or himself if the situation calls for it.
He knows how to motivate his teammates, and that is why the Rangers are consistently contenders.
Ryan Callahan is the heart and soul of the Rangers right now.
David Backes: St. Louis Blues
David Backes is basically the Ryan Callahan of the Western Conference. He was named the 20th captain in Blues team history.
He has size at 6 feet 3 inches, and every single foot of that is dedicated to him hitting his opponents.
When he's not bodychecking opponents, he's sliding across the ice to block that shot coming towards his net.
Backes is a physical force on the ice, who shies away from no one. He competed for the United States at the 2012 Winter Olympics and won a silver medal.
In 82 games, he scored 24 goals and added 30 assists for a total of 54 points.
And a cool side note: Backes also has a private pilot's license.
Jonathan Toews: Chicago Blackhawks
Jonathan Toews was picked third overall by the Blackhawks in the 2006 entry draft.
Toews has won virtually everything as he has collected a Conn Smythe, a Stanley Cup, an Olympic gold medal, two gold medals at the World Juniors, and a gold and a silver medal at the World Championships.
Everywhere he goes, he wins. He is a dynamic talent with many highlight reel goals and setups to his credit.
At only 24 years old, Toews—along with teammate Patrick Kane—should be staples of the Hawks for many coming years.
Ryan Getzlaf: Anaheim Ducks
Ryan Getzalf is the big captain of the Anaheim Ducks.
He is widely regarded as being a strong two-way center. He is very capable of making strong defensive and offensive plays when his team calls for it.
He has also been named as a power forward for his physical brand of hockey and ability to score points.
Getzlaf has won the Stanley Cup, an Olympic gold, a gold and a silver at the World Juniors and a silver at the World Championships.
Getzlaf is a hardworking captain who brings a winning record with him wherever he goes.
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