Before this surge of outstanding young talent in the NHL, captaincy in the NHL meant something. Now a lot of people don't care who the captain is. Now players in their second season are getting the "C." It's even going to goalies now.
If you're going to do things like that, what's the point?
Sidney Crosby is the best example of this. Four months into Crosby's NHL career, Pittsburgh named him Assistant Captain. Some were outraged, many never even noticed. The next year Crosby remained assistant, but Pittsburgh didn't name a captain.
They figured Crosby could fill the role without them having to take the heat for it. With Crosby still only 19, he was named Captain.
Crosby is an outstanding player and a great leader—but don't make him Captain.
That isn't half as bad as Ovechkin—he can barely speak English! The list of bad captains in the last 10 years (Toews, Lecavalier, Luongo) is nearly endless
There still are a few good captain choices out there; Lidstrom and Alfredsson come to mind.
Captain is no longer about leadership, it's about who you want to keep happy for contract negotiations.
So here's my plan: take captaincy out all together.
People realize there are great leaders. You don't need to put a letter on their jersey to know who stood up in the dressing room and rallied the team.
If you have to put letters on players' jerseys, at least do it intelligently.