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Rangers: Rick Nash Given an “A”

Rick Nash (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Rick Nash (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)


The New York Rangers have announced that Rick Nash will be an alternate captain for the team in the 2016-2017 NHL season. This is a move that will undoubtedly generate a lot of buzz – both good and bad – from fans but ultimately is a smart decision by a team in need of more leaders.

Nash doesn’t do a lot of his leading with his mouth, that’s usually very plain to see. He’s a soft spoken mild mannered star which can get under the skin of a lot of fans. He’s never one to show too much emotion when he’s happy or too much when he’s irritated. However, Nash’s leadership skills are based on play instead of words. What Nash does on the ice not too many other players on the Rangers or even in the league do and that’s contributing greatly in all facets of the game.

Nash is a formidable goal scoring and playmaking dual threat on 5 on 5 and on the power play; he helps create turnovers in the neutral zone and contributes in the defensive end in front of his own goalie. Best of all Nash is a penalty killing forward who can turn 4 on 5 short handed situations into a goal scoring chance or a goal better than most in this league.

That’s the type of leadership the Rangers are looking for. They lost a lot of veteran aged players the last couple of years with Martin St. Louis, Dan Boyle and Keith Yandle (just to name a few) leaving the squad and being replaced with younger kids who need someone to help guide them in the league. And Nash, at age 32, along with Dan Girardi and Kevin Klein, is tied for the second oldest member of the team, trailing only Henrik Lundqvist.

Nash might not do it all with his words but his commitment to helping the team on every level of the game proves he’s open to doing whatever the coach asks and making sure the team is getting the most out of him. Plus 186 points in 248 games with the Rangers helps! That’s a true leader in my opinion and a guy who is long overdue for getting an “A” on his sweater.

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