While Jonathan Huberdeau would be my pick for captain of the Calgary Flames, the odds have swung (heavily?) in the direction of a blueliner. Earlier today, Sportnet’s Eric Francis tweeted to “expect the new captain to be Rasmus Andersson.”
If chosen as the 20th captain of the Calgary Flames and the first since departure of long-time leader, Mark Giordano, Rasmus Andersson will be a fantastic choice. He is a front-runner among the fanbase and there’s no shortage of quotes to support his desire and readiness for formal leadership responsibilities in Calgary. Some of my favourites come from his recent interview on 32 Thoughts: The Podcast:
"“I’m ready to embrace the chaos.”“I would obviously love to be the captain of the Calgary Flames but I feel like we have a lot of good leaders on our team.”“In a Canadian market, you need someone to step up towards the media, towards the coaches and towards the owners because there’s so much pressure on the players – when we had Gio he would embrace that and said, ‘I’m the captain and I’ll take this one.’”"
Who wears an “A” for the Flames in 2023/24?
Only three players can wear a letter during any given game. If there’s one captain night in and night out, typically the maximum number of alternate captains is four players (two at home and two on the road).
Here’s what I predict Huska’s formal leadership group to look like if Andersson is the captain:
- Captain: Rasmus Andersson
- Alternate: Mikael Backlund
- Alternate: Jonathan Huberdeau
- Alternate: MacKenzie Weegar
Yes, my prediction suggests a slight changing of the guard and the unfortunate “stripping” of Elias Lindholm and Chris Tanev. If the Flames do go with a group of five, Tanev followed by Lindholm would be my bets.
Despite Backlund not being under contract beyond the 2023/24 season, he should still wear a letter. He has been the team’s de facto captain since Gio left and I don’t see any intelligent reason to take recognized leadership responsibility away from him.
If Jonathan Huberdeau isn’t the captain, he should certainly wear an “A” for the same reasons detailed here.
MacKenzie Weegar would be a new addition to the leadership group, but right alongside Ras, 52 has been fan favourite for the captaincy role this summer. Considering his play to end his first season as a Flame, his domination at the World Championships, and his recent Flames Talk conversation with Pat Steinberg, he should be tasked with elevated responsibility by the new-look coaching staff.
Embrace the chaos…