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what makes a good captain/leader ?

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05-24-2010, 07:40 AM
  #1
felixno44
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what makes a good captain/leader ?

so ive been named capatain of my team today. im more of a quite guy in the locker room and more of a "lead by example" kind of player.
what, in your opinion, are the most important characteristics that a good team captain should have ?

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05-24-2010, 09:32 AM
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canuck44
 
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I'm not sure if being quiet in the dressing room makes for a good captain. Don't get me wrong, I certainly believe in leading by example. But I also believe a captain should be talking and motivating his team off the ice.

Oh and, being cool headed.

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05-24-2010, 09:59 AM
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Steelhead16
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Leading by example is probably why you were named captain so that is the most important quality. Are you a forward or a defenseman? Reason I ask is that when I was smaller (peewee/bantam) I was a forward. When I was captain as a forward my assists went up. I felt like it was my job to get everyone else involved and really create a team. Then I grew and midget and junior I played defense and my PIMS went way up. I still tried to quarterback the team but I also became the cop. I took it upon myself to right all the wrongs done to my teammates. I took very penalties for things done to me. I could let those go but things done to my teammates (especially the goalie) set me off. You can lead in the locker room by not being a cheerleader. Talk to guys individually if that is more comfortable for you. Just make sure that you bring some positive with it. Don't just open your mouth when you have "constructive criticism" for a guy. If you've said 5 good things to a guy he will listen if you need to give him a little butt kickin now and again.

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05-24-2010, 11:27 AM
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j12
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Speaking from experience, I was always a quieter person in the dressing room as well, but on the bench I was always one of the most talkative. I was constantly trying to build guys up for the next shift or helping them shake off the last one. So don't worry about your dressing room presence. You might have a greater impact if you're selective about where you speak up anyways (no one wants to hear a speech every game anyways).

A couple rules that I went by:
1. Always give 100%. As you said, you lead by example, and if you put in 100% everyday then you can call guys out when they aren't doing it.
2. Positive comments work way better than negative ones. Also, take note of which players tend not to get attention from the coach. Some guys just want a bit of praise and you can help provide that. Watch for the little things a guy does and give him some praise for it. That way it reinforces the action and gives him a boost.
3. Have a good relationship with the coach. You need to be able to talk to him if any issues arise. If a player doesn't seem happy, or if there are internal issues between players it's usually good if the coach is aware. Obviously the coach isn't there to babysit, but you need to be his eyes and ears sometimes.
4. Be inclusive. Include everybody in everything and be the catalyst for that.
5. Be the leader in practice. Lead drills. During bag skating motivate guys to keep pushing it. In my experience, it rubs off on other players and good teams are ones that are constantly pushing eachother to be better and work harder.
6. Don't do anything that causes your teammates to lose your respect. You don't need to be the fighter on the team (I wasn't). In my experience guys know their roles and if you're not a fighter no one is going to expect you to fight just because you wear a C. Also, you certainly don't want to be the guy getting stupid penalties. Ultimately, you're far more valuable to the team when you're not in the box.
7. Initiate going a step further. If you're a AAA team or a Junior team, run after practice. Guys will fall in line.

There's probably other things that others can expand upon. Good luck.

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05-24-2010, 11:35 AM
  #5
Rob Brown
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Quote:
Originally Posted by canuck44 View Post
I'm not sure if being quiet in the dressing room makes for a good captain. Don't get me wrong, I certainly believe in leading by example. But I also believe a captain should be talking and motivating his team off the ice.

Oh and, being cool headed.
Depends really. A few years ago a good friend of mine was named captain (I was an A), but he is honestly the quietest guy I know, both in the dressing room and outside of it. He was by far our best player and he always gave 110%, so guys definitely felt motivated by him. Of course being vocal and talking helps, but there are captains that are quiet and still give motivation to their teammates.

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05-24-2010, 02:14 PM
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Razzmatazz
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Being the coach's son, or the best player on the team (splitting hairs, I know)

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05-24-2010, 03:11 PM
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I recall watching Leaders on the NHL Network and Dustin Brown was featured. He is/was a similar captain to you; more quiet than a shout-about guy but he lead by example which obviously works well. So far everyone who has posted in this thread has given very helpful advice as to how you can lead, if you are a quiet person by nature. Good luck with your captaincy.

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05-24-2010, 03:27 PM
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Backstrom #19
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I used to be a quiet type because I would get so caught up in the game and I was so intense and focused I would never say anything during a game.

All this year though, I've been trying to make sure I've been encouraging guys on the bench and make sure I've been talking more. You've just got make a constant effort to talk more and encourage guys.

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05-24-2010, 08:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by felixno44 View Post
so ive been named capatain of my team today. im more of a quite guy in the locker room and more of a "lead by example" kind of player.
what, in your opinion, are the most important characteristics that a good team captain should have ?
You sound a little reluctant to do it, no?

Do you really want to do it or are you just doing it because your teammates want you to?

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05-24-2010, 09:14 PM
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Burket23
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Make sure you motivate your team.

If there is a major mistake your team keeps making (too many lose pucks, Not enough passing, bad forecheck, too many turnovers) you need to say something to the team, try your best not too single people out.

So tons of effort, back check if your a foward, skate for everything.

nobody respects a cherry picker.

Stick up for your team mates

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05-24-2010, 10:04 PM
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Razzmatazz
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With all of that said, don't let all the advice overwhelm you. Just give 100% while on the ice, and pay attention to the details to the game around you while you are on the bench. You don't need to coach the team, just keep the players motived and their heads in the game.

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05-25-2010, 02:48 AM
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This is an interesting thread... I just watched the movie Invictus, and Morgan Freeman (playing Nelson Mandela) asks Mat Damon (cpt. of local rugby team) to afternoon tea or whatever and they discuss what it takes to be a cpt. and how he inspires his team. Mat Damon, if i remember correctly, says he likes to lead by example also..... Anyways, just thought this was interesting as it kinda fits.

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05-25-2010, 03:28 AM
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Razzmatazz
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Exactly, take your teammates out for tea.

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05-25-2010, 09:43 AM
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noobman
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Make sure you know the rules of the game well. As the team captain, you're one of the few guys permitted to argue calls with the ref.

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05-25-2010, 11:16 AM
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EmptyNetter
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Your profile says you're 29. Can I assume that you play in a recreational league and don't have a coach? If so, it's your work off the ice that will be most important.

1. Securing practice ice time and motivating everyone you can to attend.
2. Designating positions and making sure everyone knows their role and responsibilities.
3. Setting line combinations
4. Sending out regular announcements about game times, knowing who will be available to play and how to adjust your lines accordingly.
5. Lastly, devise a fair system of portioning ice time that includes penalty kills (who sits) and end of game situations.

The more prepared you are the easier things will flow and the less blame will be handed around. Maybe some of these things don't apply but the captain of our team is kind of like our soccer mom. Because the level of responsibility is so high the captain's position is paid -- about half the cost of the season's league fees.

One last thing -- alternate captains. Do you have any on your team? Whether you appoint them or they're elected by the team make sure you get them involved. Learn how to delegate responsibility. It should make your job a lot easier. Good luck!

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05-25-2010, 11:47 AM
  #16
Heat McManus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by felixno44 View Post
so ive been named capatain of my team today. im more of a quite guy in the locker room and more of a "lead by example" kind of player.
what, in your opinion, are the most important characteristics that a good team captain should have ?
If you've been picked as captain you should be doing something right. I agree with everything EmptyNetter said, but I'll add that keep being the player you are and don't try and become the "ra-ra" guy if that's not you.

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05-25-2010, 01:16 PM
  #17
Jarick
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All are my opinion of course, and pertain to recreational, not competitive hockey:

A good captain is one who is deliberate, fair, and honest. Conflict will come up, but the best thing for the captain to do is to take in all sides, weigh them all, make a decision, and stand by it.

He's got a lot of respect for his teammates and treats them that way, and his teammates will give him respect in return. He listens to his team and in return his team will listen to him.

He may or may not lead by example in terms of play on the ice (he may not be the best player and his style may not fit for everyone), but he always has a POSITIVE ATTITUDE and a GREAT WORK ETHIC. He expects that from all of his teammates.

When there's a problem, he addresses it in private. And when someone does a great job, recognizes it in public.

A good captain knows how to delegate roles. That way he's not bombarded by requests by everyone. He makes sure that he has a couple different voices in the locker room so players can get fired up or encouraged.

That's my take. For rec league, the captain usually runs the business side of the team too, and he'll usually make sure the lines and pairings are in order. By the way, in rec league hockey, all players should be given roughly equal ice time, no need to have a "fourth line" unless it's really high level hockey and the guys are paying way less in league fees than everyone else.

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