Apr 21, 2013; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning center Steven Stamkos (91) and right wing Martin St. Louis (26) talk during the third period against the Carolina Hurricanes at the Tampa Bay Times Forum. The Carolina Hurricanes defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay Lightning set to name their new captain

Tonight, Tampa Bay Lightning fans everywhere will get the answer to the question that has plagued them ever since the departure of longtime Captain Vincent Lecavalier; who will be the next Captain of the Tampa Bay Lightning?

At 7:30 p.m. tonight, the Tampa Bay Lightning will announce the new team captain at an invitation-only meeting.

This decision has obviously been a tough one for Lightning vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman and Lightning head coach Jon Cooper.

There are plenty of players on the team with the heart and the talent to take up their reins; however, there have been two names that have stood out among the rest; Martin St. Louis and Steven Stamkos.

While there are definitely merits to both sides of this argument about who should succeed Lecavalier at the helm, the one that sticks out the most to me is Martin St. Louis.

St. Louis has been with the team for 12 seasons, 13 if you could the lockout in 2004. He has been with them when they raised the Stanley Cup in 2004, and he has been there through their worst seasons. This has given him experience at both ends of the spectrum, and the perspective needed to take this team to the next level.

Let’s not even go into St. Louis’ insane work ethic. At 38 years of age, St. Louis has proven that age is nothing more than a number to him. Last season, St. Louis became the oldest player to ever win the Art Ross Trophy and lead the NHL in scoring.

Now, don’t get me wrong. Steven Stamkos would make a fine Captain as well.

Stamkos has essentially been the face of the Tampa Bay Lightning for many years. His face has been in numerous television commercials, billboards, and around Tampa Bay at various community efforts.

The two-time “Rocket” Richard winner is a born sniper with a natural talent for finding the back of the net.

However, I feel that in honor of Martin St. Louis’ contributions to not just the team and his community, but to the game as a whole, that he should be awarded the “C” until he chooses to hang up his skates for good; at which point I would wholeheartedly support the passing of the torch to Steven Stamkos.

What do you think? Who should be the next captain of the Tampa Bay Lightning? Let’s discuss.

Tags: Captain Martin St. Louis NHL Steven Stamkos Tampa Bay Lightning

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