For those of you that didn’t see Aaron’s tweet about it, or didn’t see the info in the comments section of a previous post, the leadership positions for the Admirals players were announced over the weekend.
It’s kind of an unusual setup.
Scott Ford will be the captain, but the alternates may be different each night, depending on where the game is being played.
Tyler Sloan and Ryan Thang will wear the “A” on the uniforms on the road. Chris Mueller and Kyle Wilson will wear the “A” for home games.
Sloan isn’t a surprise, as he is one of the elder statesmen of the team. Mueller and Wilson spent some time in the NHL last season. But this is a tremendous endorsement of the leadership qualities of Ryan Thang.
“I’m very humbled to be nominated as a second year guy,” Thanger says. “Last year we had so many guys with so much experience….five to ten years older than a lot of us. And now I’m a second year guy and one of the veterans on the team. So it’s a little different….We obviously learned a lot last year from the older guys, and I think we can pass it on to the younger guys.”
Should we be surprised about Thang wearing the A? I don’t think so. From early on, he was pegged as a guy with a good head on his shoulders.
Eric Kent wrote a piece for On The Forecheck after Thang had joined the team towards the end of the 09-10 regular season, and here’s what Lane Lambert had said about Thang at the time.
“I like his intelligence level. I think he was very well coached at Notre Dame. He has the speed, and he has the maturity and intelligence in his game. He’s a guy that we look to hear heavily in the future and the Predators look to in the future in the organization. I think he’s come in and done a real good job for us so far.”
And those comments were just after 12 regular season games, as the Admirals were getting started in the playoffs that year.
He went on to play 78 regular season games last season, ranking 3rd on the team in points, and leading the team in playoff points (tied with Gabriel Bourque).
So this really is a natural next step for Thang to grow professionally.
“It feels great. We’ve got five guys that are going to be great leaders on this team. We’re going to rotate it through and kind of lead by committee. Obviously Ford is the guy with the ‘C’, and he’s been around and he really knows the ropes and he’s going to lead us. But we want to make sure we’re there to back him up whenever he says anything in the locker room.”
(Photo credit: Scott Paulus)