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Marleau Stripped Of Captaincy

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looks like thornton might lose the 'a' as well:

Marleau, Thornton support Sharks’ quest for new leadership

CALGARY -- If Patrick Marleau is heartbroken over having the ‘C' ripped off his jersey, the San Jose Sharks centre has quite the poker face.

"Obviously, it's a great honour to be the captain," Marleau said softly Monday upon arriving in Calgary for the Team Canada Olympic orientation camp.

"Having a letter on my sweater or not is not really going to change who I am in the locker-room or what I do on the ice.

"If this is what we need to do to win, I'm all for it. We've had a really good team there in the past, and we haven't won it. Maybe this will be the thing that takes us over that hump."

The same goes for Joe Thornton and his feelings toward potentially seeing the ‘A' removed from his sweater.

In fact, Thorton figures the Sharks might start a new trend by changing up the official leadership in a quest to finally advance deep into the Stanley Cup playoffs.


"I think it might be innovative," Thornton said. "We can't get by the second round. Some teams aren't making the playoffs. Maybe they're going to change it, too."

Just last week, head coach Todd McLellan told the San Jose Mercury News the team's captaincy and two alternate captaincies are up for grabs.

Marleau scored a career-high 38 goals last season to help San Jose captured the Presidents' Trophy with the NHL's best record.

But in stunning fashion, the Sharks bowed out to lowly Anaheim in the first round of the playoffs, leaving outsiders to question the leadership in the Shark Tank.

Thornton and Mike Grier both wore an ‘A' last season. Grier signed with the Buffalo Sabres earlier this month.

"I take a lot of the blame for being the captain and not getting as far as we wanted to," said Marleau, who has spent all his 11 NHL seasons with the Sharks. "I think everybody on the team knows we messed up and we have to right that wrong.

"We definitely have what it takes to win. We showed that in the regular season. It's just a matter of bringing it all together at the right time for the playoffs. Each year, there's only one team that wins. There's a number of other teams that are trying to find a way to get over that hump. We're included in that demographic."

Upon arrival Monday, Thornton seemed more concerned about his golf bag not showing up in Calgary with the rest of the luggage.

"That's the most important thing, right?" he said with a wry grin.

On a serious note, Thornton declared any criticism of Marleau offside.

"Patty's been a good leader," Thornton said. "He's been fine. I think he's been great for us. He's been great for us in the post-season. He's been great in the regular season.

"I think they just want to go in a different direction."

Speaking of different directions, Marleau is a constant in NHL trade rumours - most recently in a three-way deal that would include disgruntled Ottawa Senators sniper Dany Heatley landing in San Jose.

Has Marleau been asked to waive his no-trade clause that runs through the 2009-10 season?

"I would like to keep that private," he said. "I can't really speculate on what's going to happen."

National Post

it all sounds pretty silly to me but i guess we'll see if it works.

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