Which NHL Teams Don’t Have Captains?

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Edmonton Oilers' Connor McDavid (97) is congratulated for his goal during the first period of the team's NHL hockey game against the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2023, in Anaheim, Calif.
(AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
BetMGM @BETMGM Jan 15, 2023, 2:05 PM
  • There are six teams in the NHL without a captain.

A team captain is a leader both on and off the ice, but do all NHL teams actually need to have one?

Of the 32 teams in the NHL, 26 of them have assigned team captains. This means that there are six teams that don’t have a captain — the Anaheim Ducks, Arizona Coyotes, Calgary Flames, Philadelphia Flyers, Seattle Kraken and Winnipeg Jets.

Which NHL Teams Don’t Have Captains?

TEAMCAPTAIN
Anaheim DucksNO CAPTAIN
Arizona CoyotesNO CAPTAIN
Boston BruinsPatrice Bergeron
Buffalo SabresKyle Okposo
Calgary FlamesNO CAPTAIN
Carolina HurricanesJordan Staal
Chicago BlackhawksJonathan Toews
Colorado AvalancheGabriel Landeskog
Columbus Blue JacketsBoone Jenner
Dallas StarsJamie Benn
Detroit Red WingsDylan Larkin
Edmonton OilersConnor McDavid
Florida PanthersAleksander Barkov
Los Angeles KingsAnze Kopitar
Minnesota WildJared Spurgeon
Montreal CanadiensNick Suzuki
Nashville PredatorsRoman Josi
New Jersey DevilsNico Hischier
New York IslandersAnders Lee
New York RangersJacob Trouba
Ottawa SenatorsBrady Tkachuk
Philadelphia FlyersNO CAPTAIN
Pittsburgh PenguinsSidney Crosby
San Jose SharksLogan Couture
Seattle KrakenNO CAPTAIN
St. Louis BluesRyan O'Reilly
Tampa Bay LightningSteven Stamkos
Toronto Maple LeafsJohn Tavares
Vancouver CanucksBo Horvat
Vegas Golden KnightsMark Stone
Washington CapitalsAlex Ovechkin
Winnipeg JetsNO CAPTAIN

Do NHL Teams Need a Captain?

According to International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) and National Hockey League (NHL) rules, the captain is the only player allowed to speak with referees about rule interpretations. If the captain is not on the ice, an alternate captain is able to take over this responsibility.

Although captains don’t have any other official responsibility or authority above that of other players, there’s often a range of informal duties that they take on for their teams. This can include leading the dressing room, communicating player concerns with management, and participating in pre-game ceremonies.

There is no requirement for NHL teams to designate the same player as captain from game to game, or to even assign an official captain at all. In the event that a team chooses not to award the captainship to a single player, the team’s alternate captains can share the leadership role and associated responsibility as they are on the ice.

Who’s the Youngest NHL Captain Ever?

In 2016, Connor McDavid was appointed as captain of the Edmonton Oilers. At just 19 years old, he was the youngest captain in NHL history.

Can an NHL Team Have 2 Captains?

As mentioned above, there is no requirement for NHL teams to designate the same player as captain from game to game, or to even assign an official captain at all. If a team decides not to award the captainship to a single player, the team’s alternate captains can share the leadership role and associated responsibility as they are on the ice.

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Our BetMGM editors and authors are sports experts with a wealth of knowledge of the sports industry at all levels. Their coverage includes sports news, previews and predictions, fun facts, and betting.