Henrik Zetterberg

With Lidstrom gone, Zetterberg likely to be Detroit’s next captain


Few job titles change with less frequency than captain of the Detroit Red Wings.

In the last 26 years, only two players have worn the “C” above the Winged Wheel — Steve Yzerman and the recently-retired Nicklas Lidstrom. As such, there’s great curiosity on who’ll become just the third Detroit captain since 1986.

Well, there’s curiosity and a pretty popular choice: Henrik Zetterberg.

Zetterberg — along with Niklas Kronwall and Valtteri Filppula — were three of the guys pegged by Lidstrom when asked about who would replace him as captain during his retirement presser.

That proclamation was followed by a number of folks on Twitter saying “Zata” is the man:

Bob Wojnowski, Detroit News: “Nick Lidstrom retires, and it’s pretty obviously who the Wings’ next captain will be…Henrik Zetterberg. He’s absolutely ready for it.”

Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press: “Bank on Henrik Zetterberg being named the next captain of the Detroit Red Wings.”

Dan Fenner, Oakland Press: “Lidstrom cites Zetterberg’s leadership first among his teammates. there’s your next captain, folks. As if there was any doubt.”

Dave Stubbs, Montreal Gazette: “Zetterberg is a big talent but he’ll need HUGE feet to fill Lidstrom’s skates if he’s named Red Wings captain as expected.”

Tom Leyden, WXYZ Detroit: “Babcock said next captain is no brainier. Cleary said Zetterberg will be fantastic captain. You connect the dots.”

Zetterberg is currently one of three Wings — along with Kronwall and Pavel Datsyuk — serving as alternate captains. If he ascends to the full captaincy, he’ll become one of just three Swedish captains in the NHL, along with Ottawa’s Daniel Alfredsson (who is mulling retirement himself) and Vancouver’s Henrik Sedin.

Here are the 10 oldest players to play a game this season

Jaromir Jagr
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This isn’t breaking news or anything. We just thought you’d like to know that three of the NHL’s 10 oldest players (who’ve played at least one game this season) are members of the Florida Panthers.

Oh, and the Panthers’ starting goalie? He’s the oldest starter in the league. (Scroll down.)

Here’s the list of skaters, topped by 43-year-old Jaromir Jagr:


Yet another veteran Panther, 36-year-old defenseman Brian Campbell, ranks 17th on the list.

Granted, the above list does not include 39-year-old Patrik Elias (who’s hurt) or 39-year-old Eric Boulton (who just re-signed with the Isles). As soon as those two play, Thornton will get pushed out of the top 10.

Now here’s the list of goalies who’ve started at least one game this season, topped by 36-year-old Roberto Luongo:


For the record, Luongo isn’t the oldest goalie under contract. That would be Minnesota’s Niklas Backstrom, who’s 37.

Related: Can Florida’s old guys hang on while the young guys get better?

Hamburglar (groin) returns, Sens demote O’Connor

Andrew Hammond
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Matt O'Connor‘s time in the Canadian capital was brief, but still noteworthy.

O’Connor, the losing netminder in Sunday’s “Battle of the Backups” against Montreal — Habs No. 2 Mike Condon got the win — has been sent down to AHL Binghamton to pave the way for Andrew Hammond‘s return from a groin injury, per the Sun.

The Hamburglar has been out since the preseason, but his return is earlier than expected.

He was originally supposed to miss the first two weeks, yet now sounds as though he’ll play one of Ottawa’s two games on an upcoming road trip through Columbus and Pittsburgh.

It’s going to be interesting to see if Hammond can replicate the success he had last season, when he came out of nowhere to go 20-1-2 with a 1.79 GAA and .941 save percentage, and finish seventh in Vezina voting.