There have been many great captain’s over the years…and that spot is still up for grabs on the current edition of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Coming into the season, Ron Wilson said that the captaincy ’situation’ would be revisited in November, after Tomas Kaberle, Mike Komisarek and Francois Beauchemin were given Alternate status, as auditions if you may. The dressing room had been in disarray since Mats Sundin packed up and left, and I totally agreed with putting it off even longer; I mean Komisarek and Beauchemin just arrived, and Kaberle just looks shy every time he’s under media scrutiny (it has to be those rosy cheeks).
So, November came and went, and the state of the captain tag was the last thing the last place Leafs were thinking about. Komisarek was injured, Beauchemin was just starting to find his stride, and Kaberle; well he was playing great; but we all know how his part will end in this story, so he was obviously not considered in that time.
So it’s December, Burke’s self imposed holiday trade freeze is in effect (the NHL’s is fast approaching), and the Leaf’s are playing the kind of hockey the team brass envisioned prior to the first game of the 2009/10 season. I think it’s about time to think about that big ‘C’ again. None of us have actually been in the locker room with these guys, but it’s hard to imagine that the demeanor of any of these guys changes THAT much behind closed doors. To nobody’s surprise, it’s been Mike Komisarek; Montreal’s should-have-been-heir to Koivu’s stitched on ‘C’ – that has been the person to talk to, and the superficial leader (that is – the guy that all us fans see as the leader already). Forget Kaberle’s tenure on the team, and Beauchemin’s experience winning a cup; the big Polish-Canadian is ready to – and already has stepped up.
Now, I’m sure that Ron Wilson already has this in the back of his head, and the players already figure who will be leading them for remainder of all of their contracts , but come on, some of us want to buy jerseys, and don’t want our friends asking us in 6 months why the Komisareek sweater is missing the captain’s ‘C’. So, consider this my “Name Komisarek Captain Already!” campaign, I’ll put up lawn stake signs, and start smear campaigns on the other candidates if I have to. I’m not asking for much, just a face and an identity of the franchise.
- D Rock