List of current NHL captains and alternate captains

List of current NHL captains and alternate captains
The captain can be identified by the large "C" on their jersey.

The National Hockey League (NHL) is a professional ice hockey league composed of 30 teams, founded in 1917. Each team may select a captain, who has the "sole privilege of discussing with the Referee any questions relating to interpretation of rules which may arise during the progress of a game".[1][2] Each team is also permitted to select alternate captains, who serve when the captain is not on the ice.[1] Captains are required to wear the letter "C" on their uniform for identification; alternate captains wear the letter "A". Both letters are 3 inches (7.6 cm) in height.[1]

Some teams in the NHL have no captain, either by choice or due to injury. Rule 6.2 of the 2008–09 Official NHL Rulebook indicates that "[only] when the Captain is not in uniform, the Coach shall have the right to designate three Alternate Captains. This must be done prior to the start of the game."[1][3] Many NHL teams with a named captain select more than two alternate captains and rotate the "A" among these players throughout the season.[4]

Goaltenders are not permitted to act as captains during games.[1] This rule was instituted in 1948 after teams complained that it took Montreal Canadiens goaltender Bill Durnan too long to skate to talk with the officials and back to his crease.[5] However, Vancouver Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo served as captain for two seasons 2008-09 and 2009-10, but because of the NHL rule against goaltender captains, the league did not allow Luongo to serve as captain on-ice.[6] As a result, the Canucks were allowed to dress three alternate captains in games, as opposed to the league standard of two.[6] Two (of the three) alternate captains handled on-ice duties in Luongo's place.[6] Luongo was not allowed to wear the "C" on his jersey, but it was incorporated into the artwork on the front of his mask.[5] Other than Durnan and Luongo, five other goaltenders have captained their team: John Ross Roach of the Toronto St. Patricks, George Hainsworth of the Montreal Canadiens, Roy Worters of the New York Americans, Alex Connell of the Ottawa Senators, and Charlie Gardiner of the Chicago Black Hawks.[7]

When named, Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins became the youngest permanent captain in NHL history.[8] Vincent Lecavalier of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Jonathan Toews, captain of the Chicago Blackhawks,[8] —both current NHL captains— are the second and third-youngest when first named captains.[8] In 1984, Brian Bellows was named interim captain of the Minnesota North Stars when Craig Hartsburg was injured, and is the youngest player to captain a team in NHL history. However, because he served only as an interim captain, Sidney Crosby retains the distinction of being the youngest permanent captain in NHL history.[9] Mark Messier holds the distinction as the only player to captain two separate teams to Stanley Cup championships. He captained both the 1990 Edmonton Oilers and the 1994 New York Rangers.[10]



Jarome Iginla, captain of the Calgary Flames
Zdeno Chara, captain of the Boston Bruins
Brenden Morrow, captain of the Dallas Stars
Team Captain Alternate Captain(s) Reference(s)
Anaheim Ducks Ryan Getzlaf Saku Koivu [11]
Teemu Selanne
Boston Bruins Zdeno Chara Patrice Bergeron [12][13]
Andrew Ference
Chris Kelly
Buffalo Sabres Jason Pominville Paul Gaustad [14]
Derek Roy
Drew Stafford
Thomas Vanek
Calgary Flames Jarome Iginla Jay Bouwmeester [15][16]
Mark Giordano
Carolina Hurricanes Eric Staal Tim Gleason [17]
Brandon Sutter
Chicago Blackhawks Jonathan Toews Duncan Keith [18]
Patrick Sharp
Colorado Avalanche Milan Hejduk Paul Stastny [19][20]
Columbus Blue Jackets Rick Nash Jeff Carter [21]
R. J. Umberger
Antoine Vermette
James Wisniewski
Dallas Stars Brenden Morrow Loui Eriksson [22]
Steve Ott
Stephane Robidas
Detroit Red Wings Nicklas Lidstrom Pavel Datsyuk [23]
Niklas Kronwall
Henrik Zetterberg
Edmonton Oilers Shawn Horcoff Ales Hemsky [24]
Ryan Whitneya
Florida Panthers Vacant Brian Campbell [25]
Ed Jovanovski
Tomas Kopecky
Stephen Weiss
Los Angeles Kings Dustin Brown Matt Greene [26]
Anze Kopitar
Minnesota Wild Mikko Koivu Matt Cullen [27]
Dany Heatley
Nick Schultz
Montreal Canadiens Brian Gionta Hal Gill [28]
Andrei Markova
Nashville Predators Shea Weber Mike Fisher [29][30]
Ryan Suter
New Jersey Devils Zach Parise Patrik Elias [31]
Ilya Kovalchuk
New York Islanders Mark Streit Kyle Okposo [32]
Brian Rolston
Steve Staios
John Tavares
New York Rangers Ryan Callahan Brad Richards [33]
Marc Staala
Ottawa Senators Daniel Alfredsson Chris Phillips [34]
Jason Spezza
Philadelphia Flyers Chris Pronger Daniel Briere [35][36]
Kimmo Timonen
Phoenix Coyotes Shane Doan Martin Hanzal [37]
Keith Yandle
Pittsburgh Penguins Sidney Crosbya Evgeni Malkin [38]
Brooks Orpik
Jordan Staal
St. Louis Blues David Backes Barret Jackman [39]
Jamie Langenbrunner
Andy McDonald
Alexander Steen
San Jose Sharks Joe Thornton Dan Boyle [40]
Ryane Clowe
Patrick Marleau
Tampa Bay Lightning Vincent Lecavalier Mattias Ohlund [41][42]
Martin St. Louis
Steven Stamkos
Toronto Maple Leafs Dion Phaneuf Colby Armstrong a [43]
Mikhail Grabovski
Phil Kessel
Mike Komisarek
Vancouver Canucks Henrik Sedin Kevin Bieksa [44]
Ryan Kesler
Manny Malhotra
Daniel Sedin
Washington Capitals Alexander Ovechkin Nicklas Backstrom [45][46]
Jason Chimera
Mike Knuble
Tom Poti
Winnipeg Jets Andrew Ladd Dustin Byfuglien [47]
Tobias Enstroma
Mark Stuart
Chris Thorburn
  • The above list shows the captains and alternate captains appointed for the 2011-12 NHL season.


  • a Player is currently injured
  • b Player injured for remainder of season


  1. ^ a b c d e "Rule 6 - Captain and Alternate Captains". National Hockey League. Retrieved 2008-10-04. 
  2. ^ Rossi, Rob (2008-10-02). "The A-B-Cs of the 'C' and 'A'". Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Retrieved 2008-10-04. 
  3. ^ Buffery, Steve (2008-10-09). "Stalled Stajan". Toronto Sun. Retrieved 2009-02-20. 
  4. ^ "Kings' Brown, Sabres' Rivet named captains". Canwest News Service. 2008-10-08. Retrieved 2009-02-20. 
  5. ^ a b The Canadian Press (2008-10-05). "Luongo sports captain's 'C' on goalie mask". CBC Sports. Retrieved 2009-02-14. 
  6. ^ a b c "Canucks name goaltender Luongo as team captain". The Sports Network. 2008-09-30. Retrieved 2009-02-20. 
  7. ^ Joe Pelletier (2008-09-30). "Captain Puckstopper". Joe Pelletier. Retrieved 2009-02-14. 
  8. ^ a b c "Toews named 34th captain in team history". Chicago Blackhawks. 2008-07-18. Retrieved 2009-02-14. 
  9. ^ McKeon, Ross (2007-12-10). "Mailbag: More Crosby". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved 2009-02-20. 
  10. ^ "". 
  11. ^ "Anaheim Ducks team roster". Anaheim Ducks. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  12. ^ "Boston Bruins team roster". Boston Bruins. Retrieved 2009-08-19. 
  13. ^ Flynn, Douglas. "Andrew Ference, Chris Kelly to Share Duties as Bruins Alternate Captain". 
  14. ^ "Buffalo Sabres team roster". Buffalo Sabres. Retrieved 2009-08-19. 
  15. ^ "Calgary Flames team roster". Calgary Flames. Retrieved 2009-08-19. 
  16. ^ Peterson, Torie. "Donning the 'A'". Brent Sutter announces Mark Giordano has been named an assistant captain. Calgary Flames. Retrieved 2011-10-09. 
  17. ^ "Carolina Hurricanes team roster". Carolina Hurricanes. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  18. ^ "Chicago Blackhawks team roster". Chicago Blackhawks. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  19. ^ "Colorado Avalanche team roster". Colorado Avalanche. Retrieved 2011-11-14. 
  20. ^ Dater, Adrian (2011-10-13). "Jan Hejda has tying assist, setting up Colorado Avalanche shootout victory". The Denver Post. Retrieved 2011-10-28. 
  21. ^ "Columbus Blue Jackets team roster". Columbus Blue Jackets. Retrieved 2011-10-08. 
  22. ^ "Dallas Stars team roster". Dallas Stars. Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  23. ^ "Detroit Red Wings team roster". Detroit Red Wings. Retrieved 2011-10-12. 
  24. ^ "Edmonton Oilers team roster". Edmonton Oilers. Retrieved 2011-11-14. 
  25. ^ "Florida Panthers team roster". Florida Panthers. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  26. ^ "Los Angeles Kings team roster". Los Angeles Kings. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  27. ^ "Minnesota Wild team roster". Minnesota Wild. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  28. ^ "Montreal Canadiens team roster". Montreal Canadiens. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  29. ^ "Nashville Predators team roster". Nashville Predators. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  30. ^ Cooper, Josh (2011-10-07). "Fisher named alternate captain; Rinne to start". The Tennessean. Retrieved 2011-10-08. 
  31. ^ "New Jersey Devils team roster". New Jersey Devils. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  32. ^ "New York Islanders team roster". New York Islanders. Retrieved 2011-10-08. 
  33. ^ "New York Rangers team roster". New York Rangers. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  34. ^ "Ottawa Senators team roster". Ottawa Senators. Retrieved 2011-11-14. 
  35. ^ "Pronger Named Captain". Philadelphia Flyers. 2011-09-16. Retrieved 2011-09-19. 
  36. ^ "Philadelphia Flyers team roster". Philadelphia Flyers. Retrieved 2009-08-19. 
  37. ^ "Phoenix Coyotes team roster". Phoenix Coyotes. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  38. ^ "Pittsburgh Penguins team roster". Pittsburgh Penguins. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  39. ^ "St. Louis Blues team roster". St. Louis Blues. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  40. ^ "San Jose Sharks team roster". San Jose Sharks. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  41. ^ "Tampa Bay Lightning team roster". Tampa Bay Lightning. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  42. ^ Dusterberg, Kurt. "Last loss to Lightning still stings Hurricanes". National Hockey League. Retrieved 2011-10-08. 
  43. ^ "Toronto Maple Leafs team roster". Toronto Maple Leafs. Retrieved 2011-10-22. 
  44. ^ "Vancouver Canucks team roster". Vancouver Canucks. Retrieved 2011-10-22. 
  45. ^ "Washington Capitals team roster". Washington Capitals. Retrieved 2011-10-07. 
  46. ^ "Q & A". What does the ‘A’ mean on Nicklas Backstrom’s jersey?. Washington Capitals. Retrieved 2011-10-08. 
  47. ^ "Winnipeg Jets team roster". Winnipeg Jets. Retrieved 2011-11-14. 

External links

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