(Tom Horak-USA TODAY Sports)
Much to everyone’s surprise, multimedia broadcaster for ESPN, NHL Network and TSN, Kevin Weekes, reported very late Monday night that the New York Rangers were going to be naming defenseman, Jacob Trouba, as the 28th Captain in Rangers franchise history.
The reason I say that this comes as a surprise is because many Rangers fans — and other hockey fans who pay attention to the team — thought for sure that forward, Chris Kreider, would surely be named Captain after his 52-goal 2021-22 season, and if it wasn’t going to be Kreider, the favorites for runners up were Mika Zibanejad and Adam Fox.
Trouba was traded to the Rangers in 2019 from the Winnipeg Jets in a deal that saw Neil Pionk, and a 2019 first-round pick go back to Winnipeg.
Many Rangers’ fans have been critical of Trouba this offseason, stating that his two penalties late in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final cost the Rangers a trip to the Stanley Cup. To give Trouba the benefit of the doubt, the Rangers wouldn’t have even made it to the ECF had it not been for Trouba’s physicality that turned the tide in the first two rounds against the Pittsburgh Penguins and Carolina Hurricanes.
Trouba finished the 2022-23 season with 39 points on 11 goals and 28 assists. Trouba’s hard-nosed, lay-the-body style of play is what makes him so dangerous to go up against on the ice. Opposing players must be aware of his presence, and never dare to keep their head down unless they want the Trou-Trou-Train sending them to the ice.