The Chilliwack Chiefs don’t know yet who their captain will be, but four players have been given A’s.
One of those players is one of the youngest on the roster.
Harrison Blaisdell, a 2001-born forward, is being looked to as a leader and is ready for the role.
“For me, it’s all about not letting my age affect how the other boys think about me,” the second year skater said. “I can be a leader out on the ice, and in the room I can be a good guy and lead the team that way.
“Age doesn’t really matter.”
Chiefs head coach Brian Maloney said last week that a leader is a leader, whether he’s 16, 17 or 20 years old.
Blaisdell is taking that to heart.
“I was part of the RBC Cup team and we had a lot of really good leaders in that room, and I learned a lot from them,” he said. “I’m taking what I learned from them and applying it to this year’s team.”
Will Calverley, last year’s captain, inspired Blaisdell with his work ethic, giving everything he had on every shift even when things weren’t going great.
“Honestly, all of the older guys on the team were really helpful to me, helping me learn the junior ropes right away,” Blaisdell said. “Any time I never needed anything, they were there for me.
“Not every guy is going to be a rah-rah guy in the room, but as long as guys are blocking shots, forechecking hard and being tenacious on the puck —as long as a guy’s play on the ice reflects being a leader, that’s all you can ask for.”
Other players currently wearing A’s are defencemen Marcus Tesink and Callum Volpe and forward Skyler Brind’Amour.
The coaching staff is patiently waiting for a player to assert himself as the captain, and Blaisdell is OK with that plan.
“We have a lot of leaders and it motivates guys even more to step up,” Blaisdell said. “I think it’s a smart decision by Brian (Maloney) to feel around and see who the captain will be.”