The Buffalo Sabres have gone in a unique direction with their leadership group, naming Thomas Vanek and Steve Ott co-captains for the 2013-14 season.
According to head coach Ron Rolston, Vanek will serve as captain for home games and Ott will don the “C” for road contests. In addition, defenseman Christian Ehrhoff has been named as an alternate captain.
The decision to name Vanek and Ott co-captains isn’t entirely surprising — Vanek is the team’s most talented and leading scorer, and Ott has quickly become a fan favorite.
What is interesting, though, are their contractual statuses.
Both Ott and Vanek are pending UFAs at season’s end. Vanek has already been the subject of many a trade rumor and was non-committal about sticking though a potential rebuild in Buffalo, saying the situation wasn’t the “best-case scenario.”
Ott has been less talkative on the subject, and GM Darcy Regier said he hasn’t begun discussions about a new contract (adding that it’s “not unusual” to be silent on talks with ’14 free agents.)
Image courtesy Buffalo Sabres