The Flyers moves in trades and free agency this off-season brought a solid combination of talent and leadership to a team that defined underperformance last season. When former captains Briere, Smith, and Timmonen joined possible future captains Gagne, Richards, and company, one question facing the Flyers this summer was who would wear the C on the ice. Yesterday, the team announced it would be 33-year-old defenseman Jason Smith, the former captain of the Edmonton Oilers. The alternate captains will be Richards and Gagne.
Philly has lacked a solid captain since Keith Primeau last wore the C, with Peter Forsberg and Darien Hatcher serving in a rather pedestrian way. I'd assumed Danny Briere—the biggest name of the Flyers new faces—would be the easiest and most fan-friendly choice among the deserving players, but I think Smith will be great in the role. The brass and the fans liked what they saw on Saturday, with Smith dropping the gloves twice in a preseason game (one of which was against Colton Orr--see below). I think this is a captain this town can get behind.