Ryan O’Reilly has worn an ‘A’ the last two seasons. ©2017, Hickling Images, Olean Times Herald

Phil Housley in no hurry to name new Sabres captain

BUFFALO – Instead of using a temporary captain this preseason, Sabres coach Phil Housley has named three alternate captains each game.

A slew of players, including perhaps the top three candidates for the vacant captaincy – Jack Eichel, Kyle Okposo and Ryan O’Reilly – have worn an ‘A.’

Housley is in no rush to name a captain.

“We’re just going to wait,” he said this afternoon following practice inside HarborCenter. “This has only been a couple weeks for me really getting on the ice with these guys, getting to know them and seeing how they react and fit into the team. That’ll happen maybe after the preseason. I don’t have a definite answer for that.”

That, of course, begs the question, will the Sabres even have a captain this season? Housley said he doesn’t know.

“We’re just evaluating right now,” he said.

The Sabres didn’t re-sign former captain Brian Gionta.


Housley on if he’s dealt with anything relating to the recent protests by NFL players during the national anthem: “No, not at all, it really hasn’t been brought up, to tell you the truth. We’ll deal with that if that arises, but right now, guys have been really good about what we’re trying to accomplish here at training camp.”

Would Housley have a problem if a player wanted to protest during the anthem?

“I don’t know how to answer that because it hasn’t happened,” he said. “So I don’t have an opinion right now.”


Sabres defenseman Taylor Fedun left today’s practice after taking a puck in the ear and needed stitches, Housley said.

Meanwhile, defenseman Jake McCabe (upper body, week-to-week) and center Evan Rodrigues (hand, day-to-day) missed the session.

Housley said McCabe was recently nursing a sore shoulder.

One thought on “Phil Housley in no hurry to name new Sabres captain”

  1. Naming any player as Captain? I’ve watched all 3 Major sports and the NHL. My wonder is a Captain in the NHL? What does he actually do? Stands at Center ice before the Anthem is sung. On ice? We had Gionta as captain but still had a less than good team. Behind closed doors maybe they have an effect but on ice, where and what? It seems it’s more of an Honorary title.

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