I know this was written yesterday, but I have to nod and agree with it just so we’re clear where I stand. From Sabres Edge and Mike Harrington:
All the talk about a leadership void in the Sabres’ locker room rings pretty true. How much longer do we have to listen to Lindy Ruff talk about Jochen Hecht as a leader? For my money, I can’t understand why Paul Gaustad hasn’t had a letter. During last year’s rotating captaincy, he certainly deserved a chance.
Gaustad has been one of the biggest leaders this year too. After the Dec. 30 debacle against Washington, it was Gaustad who stood in the locker room and decried his teammates’ performance in what was a key moment that set the stage for the club’s solid January.
Another season went down the drain despite Thursday’s win in Carolina and Gaustad had plenty to say today as the Sabres somberly trudged through the Amherst Pepsi Center for a brief meeting.
“It’s disappointing. Guys have to look in the mirror. It starts with each person in the room,” Gaustad said. “I have to find ways to be better myself and everybody else has to do the same thing. It’s unacceptable with this group. I think we have a lot of growing to do. It’s disappointing. It falls on the players.”
You want better leadership on this team next season, put a letter on Gaustad’s sweater.
Yes yes yes, a thousand times, yes. I know Harrington clearly isn’t alone in th media with this sentiment, as we’ve heard Paul Hamilton say the same thing as early as last season. The idea that Gaustad is too young to be a leader just doesn’t hold up anymore, and I think it’s very obvious the 26-year-old is ready for the job.
After all, he learned from the best.