The news that almost everyone around the league had been waiting for/expecting, Philadelphia Flyers fan or not, came down on Tuesday afternoon. Claude Giroux was officially named the franchise’s next captain.
Apparently, Giroux had known about the promotion for several days but it was officially announced by the Flyers on Tuesday. Kimmo Timonen will serve as his “associate” captain, while Scott Hartnell and Daniel Briere will serve as alternate captains for the Flyers.
Giroux seemed like the easy choice as the next captain of the Flyers, succeeding Chris Pronger, even going back to last season. Paul Holmgren said that this move was something they were already looking at, but it was Giroux’s performance in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals against the Pittsburgh Penguins that really sealed the deal.
He finished with three points in that game, but really set the tone with his leadership in what turned out to be the clinching game for the Flyers. He leveled Sidney Crosby early on before the Flyers ran away with it.
Overall, the 2011-2012 season was a breakout campaign for Giroux. He averaged well over a point a game, finishing with 93 points in 77 regular season contests. He was a top offensive player in the league, at full strength, in addition to adding 38 points on the power play.
The move to hand Giroux the ‘C’ officially confirms what we already knew: he is the face of the Philadelphia Flyers. While there are concerns over him being promoted at such a young age, he’s already proven to be much more mature than the likes of Mike Richards was, back when he was named captain.
This was an easy call for Holmgren on the Flyers and one that virtually everyone saw coming. The official announcement was a mere formality, and the Flyers now have their 19th captain in franchise history. Now, they just need to get him locked up long term.