Mike Fisher To Be Named Preds New Captain
The Nashville Predators will make the official announcement later today that Mike Fisher will become the franchise’s newest captain. For me, it’s an obvious choice. For others…. Not so much. There has been much speculation about this over the last 2+ months. Some argue that after trading away longtime captain Shea Weber, the team needed to go with a youth movement and promote Weber’s defensive partner Roman Josi.
There are still others who believe James Neal should take the reigns. Given the hoopla that PK Subban has brought since his acquisition, there were some that made rumblings about him donning the ‘C’. Roman Josi is arguably the team’s best player. Once living in Weber’s shadow, Josi has catapulted himself into a top five defenseman across the NHL. In addition to that, he’s got a very friendly, long-term contract with the club. While he served as alternate captain at times last season, I don’t believe it’s his time to take over as leader of the locker room just yet.
JamesNeal has worn the ‘A’since he was acquired in the deal that sent fan favorite Patric Hornqvist to the Penguins. After a disappointing first season in Nashville, Neal tallied 31 goals last year, accomplishing that feat for just the second time in his career. Neal is probably the team’s best forward overall, but his relatively short tenure with the Preds hurts his case for the captaincy.
Ah…. PK Subban…. Who DOESN’T love this guy, right? Michel Therrien… I’m looking at you. The 26-year old Subban already has a Norris Trophy under his belt and will be surrounded by plenty of talent to further compliment his game. He will also be in a system which allows him to best utilize his offensive prowess. Even though he was shunned of the captaincy in Montreal, the Preds have ample leadership to not put added pressure on the superstar.
That brings us to Mike Fisher. I went on record immediately following the blockbuster trade that Fisher is the captain of this team…. Period. He’s entering his sixth full reason with the club and has proven to be one of, if not the hardest working player in every situation on the ice. His numbers have steadily declined the last couple years, notching just 13 goals in the regular season in a decreased role as third line center. We all know he scored the most dramatic goal in franchise history, but let’s not forget that he scored four other goals during the Preds playoff run. Even at 36, Fisher has shown he still has more to give. Is it possible he’s just a stopgap captain until next year?….. Probably… but that doesn’t mean he’s the wrong choice.