Not-yet-captain Saku Koivu takes a breather during the 1996-97 season, his sophomore year in the NHL. He was voted captain by his teammates on Sept. 30, 1999.
Denis Brodeur, NHLI via Getty Images
This could be an historic season for the Canadiens and their captain Saku Koivu.
Expectations are high for the club in their centennial season, having won the Eastern Conference championship last season and gone two rounds deep in the playoffs.
This is the ninth season (10th, including the lockout of 2004-05) that Koivu has worn the captain’s C, second in service only to the great Jean Béliveau. And it’s a contract year for Koivu, with no guarantee that he’ll be back with the club next year.
The 33-year-old native of Turku, Finland sat alone on Wednesday with The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs at the Bell Centre, a day before the Canadiens broke training camp, for a 45-minute talk, on and off the record, about his past, present and future with the Canadiens.