Some players in the NHL just have that special leadership trait. You'll hear scouts talk about young skaters having "intangibles" leading up to drafts. You'll hear coaches talk about the need for leaders to emerge in the locker room.
There's no statistical measure of leadership. It's something you witness and sense and feel. A radiance that pushes the players to be better and fans to cheer louder. It's unteachable and invaluable. Stanley Cup championships do not arrive on the doorsteps of teams that don't have a special player or two who can lead.
From Steve Yzerman's icy stare to Mario Lemieux's drive to play hockey while having a back so shot that he couldn't tie his own skates, the manifestations of tangible leadership are rare and special.