Mark Giordano’s contract is up at the end of the season and with his age you have to think about him calling it a career. Who would be next to fill the Captain’s shoes? When looking at the Flames roster you see a few standout names. Matthew Tkachuk should fly off that paper.
Making A Case For Himself
The 23-year-old has already made a name for himself in the sense of being a well-rounded player and an agitator. Some call him a mini Brad Marchand. No matter which way you take that, it’s a compliment. After all, Marchand is one of the best left wingers in the game.
Captaincy doesn’t mean you’re the best player on the team and can put up the most numbers each season. You possess an unmatched level of dedication to the game and your teammates.
Tkachuk is a player you can count on to retaliate if a teammate is hurt. He isn’t afraid to be the agitator. There’s a style to his gameplay that is gritty and he admits that he needs to be physical and not just a goal scorer.
I don’t see his talent up for debate at all. As he led the team in points last season. In 293 regular-season games, he has a total of 235 points. There’s no denying he’s good at hockey and will continue to prosper in the league especially if the Flames use this mini rebuild as a chance to build around him.
Tkachuk is a very emotional athlete. You see it when he fights or when he’s in the press box watching an elimination game.
Tkachuk’s performance during the 2019-20 playoffs kept the team alive. He, unfortunately, had to be sidelined due to injury. Whenever they showed him in the pressbox, you could tell how frustrated he was and how desperately he wanted to be out on the ice with his teammates. This was the solidifying moment for me. The Flames played a tighter game when he was on the ice. His presence is a force to be reckoned with. You’re not “safe” when Chucky is on the ice. I’d imagine you’re always looking over your shoulder and not entirely focused, especially if you’re behind the net. Seems to be a sweet spot for the future captain.
Growing into the role
He isn’t afraid to step up and put an aggressor in their spot but he’s also not afraid to get under someone’s skin. His history with Drew Doughty comes to mind. In a way, he reminds me of Zdeno Chara. Granted, Chara is 7 feet on skates and it’s a little terrifying going up to him but Tkachuk still has people shaking in their boots if they decide to go after a Flames player. He’s not afraid to retaliate. The Flames power play can take care of the rest.
It may be next season or years from now, but expect a C on 19’s jersey. After all, like father, like son.