The Habs will have a new captain entering the 2018-19 season as the team announced that Shea Weber will replace Max Pacioretty in that capacity. Paul Byron and Brendan Gallagher have been named as alternates.
Weber, the 30th captain in team history, will have to wait a while before he wears the ‘C’ in a game as he’s out until December so an additional alternate captain will need to be determined in the days ahead. (Jeff Petry and Tomas Plekanec are likely choices for that.)
The 33-year-old is entering his third season with the team after being acquired from Nashville in the 2016 offseason. He’s no stranger to being a captain as he served in that capacity with the Predators for six years prior to being dealt. He is the first defenceman since Chris Chelios (co-captain in 1989-90) to be the captain and is the first Canadian-born captain of the franchise in this millennium.
Unlike the Pacioretty captaincy, this was not done by a team vote but rather by management and the coaching staff.
As for the alternates, Gallagher (a popular choice amongst the fans) is entering his seventh season with the team and has worn the ‘A’ before. Byron is set to enter his fourth campaign in Montreal and recently signed a four-year extension that keeps him locked up for the next half-decade so while his name hadn’t been thrown out in speculation for the captaincy, it’s not too surprising that he gets the nod here.
Last month, we had put together a Writers Weigh In piece that was going to run later today about who should have been named the captain. The response was mixed with two people picking Gallagher, one picking Weber, two preferring to not name a captain this season, one that was okay with either Weber or Gallagher, and one that wanted the two to serve as co-captains.