Since Ryan Callahan was traded to Tampa Bay Lightning, I've harbored resentment toward the National Hockey League. While other fans continue clamoring for Ryan McDonagh to become the New York Rangers' next Captain, the most deserving candidate is being shafted. Based on a ruling from over 50 years ago, Henrik Lundqvist can never don a "C" patch or become an officially designated on-ice leader for New York.
During the 1947-1948 hockey season, Bill Durnan abused his duties as team captain of the Montreal Canadians. Often leaving the crease to challenge referee operations, opposing teams claimed that Durnan was giving Montreal an edge with unscheduled time outs. After the league year ended, the NHL banned the goal tending position from performing captain duties. It is now 2014. Why has this ruling never been revisited? Why does the NCAA hockey division allow no position based restrictions on their patch bearers?
I can sit here and praise "The King" further but I rather show you some photos which are worth more than words. What other Ranger was in a complete state of disarray following Game Five of the 2014 Stanley Cup Final? What other Ranger has renown respect to be elected spokesman for Garden of Dreams in 2009? No one. Henrik Lundqvist has portrayed the pulse of the Garden Faithful in extraordinary light since 2005.
Another sleeper candidate for the "C" patch is Dan Girardi. Beginning in 2011, Girardi edged himself from locker room competition by becoming an interim Alternate Captain on three separate occasions. Experience is a key element of leadership. Signing a six year extension back in February will allow Girardi to finish the job he started after Callahan was traded at the trade deadline. This decision will also keep two "A"s open that can be snagged by the likes of McDonagh and Derick Brassard.