Montreal Canadiens’ Nick Suzuki just got a big vote of confidence from teammate Chris Wideman regarding a future captaincy nomination.
When Chris Wideman took to the podium for the last day of the season and covered many topics, including the leadership qualities of the Montreal Canadiens’ young star, Nick Suzuki. Wideman did not hold back when asked about what he’s seen from Suzuki this season.
“There’s nothing I’ve seen from him that doesn’t say captain,” said Wideman when asked to describe Suzuki’s leadership qualities.
That was a strong endorsement from the veteran blueliner toward the Canadiens’ young centre, but this isn’t the first time, nor the last, that we’ll likely hear about it.
Montreal Canadiens Captain in The Near Future?
Nick Suzuki has grown up very quickly in the Montreal Canadiens organization, starting at the tender age of 20 and moving his way up to the club’s No. 1 centre within less than two years. He’s grown on the fan base, the players in the room and every coach that has had the pleasure of deploying him. When you look at Suzuki’s path to the NHL, he’s always been in a leadership role, dating back to his time with the Owen Sound Attack in the OHL.
With the loss of Shea Weber, Suzuki was given a letter at the very start of the season, which he wore on an alternating basis. It was a sign that the youngster, who hasn’t yet finished his entry-level contract, had already begun to take on a leadership role with the team, as he led them in scoring all the way to the 2021 Stanley Cup Final. The Canadiens wanted to give Nick Suzuki that opportunity to grow in a leadership role, something that Brendan Gallagher alludes to in the press conference below at the start of the 2021-2022 training camp.
— Priyanta Emrith (@HabsInHighHeels) September 28, 2021
Rising Up to the Challenge
If the team wanted to test Suzuki’s leadership abilities and resolve in the face of impossible adversity, there was no better season to do so than this one. Despite all the injuries and covid-19 infections, the 22-year-old was the only player on the team that was able to suit up for every single game this season while leading the team in scoring. He’s been the most consistent Montreal Canadien this season, posting 21 goals and 39 assists through 81 games, all while playing with a cast of ever-changing linemates.
His play under Martin St. Louis has been especially impressive, as he was tasked with taking on even more responsibility and thrived in his new role. In that time, he’s put up 12 goals and 21 assists for 33 points in just 36 games, all while playing in all situations and boasting a much improved 51.3% faceoff percentage. The growth of Suzuki has been staggering this season, and it seems almost inevitable that he will one day have the prestigious “C” on his jersey, it’s just simply a question of timing.
Nick Suzuki cuts the Bruins lead down to just one goal with his 21st of the season! pic.twitter.com/P88g8Ax3Ji
— Scott Matla (@scottmatla) April 25, 2022