Barrie Colts: To 'C', or not to 'C'? Life after Aaron Ekblad.


Catchy title? We are pretending to fit in with other blogs this morning and throwing together a catchy title with hopes to get more hits. Seems to work for some of the big boys/girls in the blogging world!

Quick answer to our question in the title, yes! Of course we name another captain, otherwise the captains wall at Barrie Molson Center will get pretty boring over the next 20 years..Oh, and because we need a leader. 

Tonight, OUR captain Aaron Ekblad will be making his NHL preseason debut with the Florida Panthers. An exciting time for fans being able to see players they loved and supported move on to the next level while in the back of their minds crying to themselves "COME BACK AARON WE LOVE YOU!!!!!"

Losing Ekblad isn't just losing a star player. It is losing a leader. And lets be honest, it isn't likely that we will be seeing Ekblad back in a Colts uniform.. Ever. Maybe he will come back on a future Alumni night and throw on the colours and wave to the BMC faithful and sign autographs, but will he play for us? It isn't likely. 

So the Colts and us fans are left here to wonder... Who is a leader? Well, lets look at our options. 



Both Brendan Lemieux and Kevin Labanc are both candidates, but do we wonder how long they will be with the team? With both guys getting drafted, you can't help but wonder how long it will be before they are sent to their NHL teams. Sure, San Jose is a pretty solid team and might not be looking to add Labanc at this time, but anyone who watches that team knows that they are anything but consistent and maybe a roster shake up would be the thing they need to not only make the playoffs (like they usually do) but, you know.. not suck when they get there. 

Lemieux however could see time in Buffalo because, well they suck. Bringing in a power forward with Lemieux's skill would in no way hurt the team. He is the kind of player that could easily win Sabre's fans over and though he may not get them in the playoffs, having a "fan favorite" could only help a team that has been anything but entertaining in the last.... however long it has been that they have sucked. (Blog hard with words like suck)

So if they are not around, what other options do we have? 

Joseph Blandisi is a candidate. This is his 5th season in the OHL and will be his first full season as a Colt. Yes, we are all hot for him right now because in the first two games of this season, he has scored 5 points but is he the "real deal?" Because we like quick answers here, yes he is. In 180 OHL games played, Blandisi has 60 goals and 137 points. Is there more to being captain than point production? Again, yes. But can a player with this kind of star power develop even further when given the C? No doubt! Not only could he grow more but when playoffs come, how good can he be? With all of his years in the league, he has only once made it to the playoffs in 2012 with Owen Sound. 5 games later and the OHL has never seen him again in the playoffs. I think that giving him the C could not only further his growth, but could benefit the team as well. 

Now don't get hot. I am not saying Blandisi SHOULD be the next captain, I am just suggesting that it could work. I mean, do we have any other options?


Jonny Laser. Kid looks pretty good with the A on his chest, am I right? Imagine how good he could look with the C? After all, in his 4th OHL season, he has only worn a Colts jersey. Gotta love those franchise guys, right? And there is more to this kid than just looking good in the colours. In the regular season, Laser has played 149 games. In that time, he has 37 points and is a +33. Don't love the stat? That is okay, suggesting that a +/- stat is stupid is a fair opinion, but I don't rule it out with blue liners. In 3 Playoff appearances, Laser has played in 40 games posting 12 points. One thing worth looking at as well is his growth. Each season, he comes back looking better. He is a high energy player who played alongside Ekblad and no doubt he learned a thing or two from the first round draft pick.

Realistically, these aren't the only options. Guys like Mangiapane and Pastorious are also guys who could throw their hats into the mix and would make fair cases. 

These are just some thoughts. Who would you like to see as the next Barrie Colts captain? Let us know in the comments here, on Twitter or on Facebook! We would love to hear you weigh in! 


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