A major rumor regarding rookie Connor Bedard has just been confirmed

May 2, 2024  (6:29 PM)

Foligno Fighting With Brendan Smith
Photo credit: Daily Herald

Kyle Davidson and the Chicago Blackhawks wanted to identify the team's core, before quickly panting a "C" on the team's next leader.

The reason to hold off was to respect Jonathan Toews's tenure, as the longest serving Captain in team history.
"The only plan right now is to sort of just let it breathe for a year," Davidson said on Sept. 19, 2023. "We came off such a successful tenure with Jonathan that, a little bit of it is just out of respect for Jonathan, to not fill that spot right away.

"And the other part is not to put that pressure on someone else when you're coming out of a period of such, call it greatness, right? You want the next person to be in a position to succeed. There's no requirement to have a captain, and so we just felt that it was best to leave that, push that decision a little bit, we'll let the chips fall where they may.

"Over the next year, we'll see who emerges, see what the best option is, and decide next year if it's appropriate to name someone. We'll just take that as it comes."


It seems likely that Connor Bedard is the next leader for the Blackhawks, who leads by example and says the right things. He also possesses the qualities you want in a leader, with his passion showing on and off the ice always.
The question is how soon is too soon to put the "C" on Bedard? He's still 18 and will turn 19 in July, playing another season as a teen.
Toews himself was given the Captain role, at 20 years of age which made him the third youngest captain at the time in the NHL.
"I was really young when they named me captain and it's just a funny thing to think about," Toews told NBC Sports Chicago on Jan. 16, 2023. "There's not a lot of sports where you're wearing a C on your sweater and it's out there for everyone to see.

"To a certain degree, there's a lot of ways in which you're under a microscope, not only to the fans and the media but to your own teammates, and I think I was just one of those young kids that took it very seriously and I wanted to do everything in my power to help the team win and I also wanted to be a good captain. I took that pretty seriously on my shoulders.

"Obviously I had a lot of help over the years but definitely felt a lot of the pressure with the ups and downs. There was some good, some bad there, but it was all a great learning experience and I think when you're under that pressure for a long time you learn a lot about yourself."

With Connor Bedard still maturing as a player, maybe it's best to put the "C" on Nick Foligno, to hold for Bedard the next two seasons.
Foligno has already taken on the "De-facto" Leadership role with the team and would be a great energizer for a young team, while still holding them accountable.
He could hold the space, for Bedard much like Marty Lapointe did during Jonathan Toews's rookie season in 2007-2008.
However, Foligno had no comment on the Captaincy in particular, remaining humble:
"That's a hard one for me to say," Foligno said. "I think if you're a true leader, you're just going to do what you do, the way you need to do it, and not worry about titles. I don't really think that really matters to me. At the end of the day, we're a team that needs leadership, where we need to just point in a direction and push to go there. But I think it can be done collectively. It can be done with the right mindset of every guy.

"I was really impressed with some of the guys stepping up in leadership roles this year when they had to. And how I've been in that role a long time in my career, it's encouraging to see that we have those types of players on this team. So I'm excited about that part at least. I feel like we have some good pieces in place, so I'm not too concerned about captain right now, I'm more thinking about the group."

In the meantime, Foligno seems to be the best candidate for the time being, while the Blackhawks take the season off to decompress and return fresh to the United Center.
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A major rumor regarding rookie Connor Bedard has just been confirmed

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