Mike Cammalleri Proves He Should Be the Next Montreal Canadiens Captain

Felix Sicard@@YeetrocityCorrespondent IDecember 5, 2009

MONTREAL- NOVEMBER 28:  Mike Cammalleri #13 of the Montreal Canadiens skates during the NHL game against the Washington Capitals on November 28, 2009 at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.  The Capitals defeated the Canadiens 4-3 in a shootout.  (Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)
Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images

It was a special night for the Montreal Canadiens organization.

Founded on Dec. 4, 1909, the Canadiens celebrated 100 years of excellence, passion, and tradition on Friday night.

Having reunited many of the franchise's past greats, such as Jean Beliveau, Guy Lafleur, Patrick Roy, etc., the Canadiens marketing department organized a magical night where past players and coaches were honored.

One of the biggest highlights of this night was to see past legends of the club in full uniform reunited on the ice for one final skate.

It was truly amazing to see Patrick Roy wearing all his goalie equipment, stopping shots just like in the good old days, although Saint Patrick later admitted in his speech to the Bell Centre crowd that, "It's a good thing that those warmups lasted only five minutes."

Humor aside, some of the greatest players in Montreal Canadiens history, and hockey history for that matter, were able to reunite and reminisce about the past as they all prepared in the locker room.

In a post game show on RDS called L'Antichambre , past players such as Eric Desjardins, Patrice Brisebois, Pierre Turgeon, Rejean Houle, Pierre Bouchard, and Claude Lemieux were invited to to share their thoughts on the night as a whole and their experiences with the Montreal Canadiens.

All players had interesting things to say, but all of them duly pointed out that Mike Cammalleri was one of the few Canadiens players to come visit the locker room to shake hands with and congratulate each and every player.

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After scoring three goals in leading his team to victory, Cammalleri certainly honored the Canadiens' past.

Each former player was asked who they thought would be fit to be the next Canadiens captain, and the nearly unanimous answer was the name of Mike Cammalleri.

The Canadiens' leading goal scorer has not only been one the team's key players, but he has quietly been emerging into a team leader.

The Montreal squad has already dealt with its fair share of adversity and criticism early on in the season, and Cammalleri has not shied away from being up front and about the team's difficulties.

Never one to shy away from criticism, Mike Cammalleri not only answers the team's critics verbally, but he answers them even more emphatically on the ice, as his 15 goals and two hat tricks suggest.

Besides Tomas Plekanec, Cammalleri has been the best offensive player for the Canadiens. His panache for scoring goals in bunches has electrified the Montreal crowds on several occasions and as previously mentioned, has stepped up to the plate to answer criticism directed at the team.

While he has not tried to take the blame for the team's downfalls, Cammalleri is one of the few players to speak up after losses. He has shown leadership qualities in the process by lifting his team with his goal scoring and intensity.

Coincidentally, for the first time in the franchise's 100 years of existence, no player has a "C" embroidered over his heart.

In the midst of a roller coaster start to the season, it would be highly beneficial to the team if a captain were to be named, so that the players would have someone to look up to.

Also, the team would have more of an identity and fans could automatically associate with the player when thinking the team.

Early on in the Canadiens' first hundred years of existence, another star with small stature named Howie Morenz was the face of Le Club de Hockey Canadien.

Although it is early to make such comparisons, with a string of high scoring seasons and a captaincy, it wouldn't be too far-fetched to speak of Cammalleri in the same class as Morenz.

Beyond his offensive contributions, his leadership qualities and statesmanship show that he is captain material.

Bob Gainey should not wait any longer to make Mike Cammalleri the 28th captain of the Montreal Canadiens.