There's a new captain in Nashville, as talented young defenseman Shea Weber will wear the "C" on his jersey this coming season, the Predators announced Thursday night.
Weber, 24, led Nashville defensemen in scoring and finished sixth overall on the team with 16 goals and 43 points. He was also a valuable member of the Canadian Olympic Team that won the gold medal in the Vancouver Olympics.
"In addition to being one of the top young defenseman in the League today, Shea is a natural leader, and we are confident he has the respect of his teammates, opponents, the Predators organization and its fans," Nashville GM David Poile said. "He becomes the first Predators draft pick to be named captain, and has been part of the culture and belief system we have worked hard to create."
Former captain Jason Arnott was traded to the New Jersey Devils last month. Weber becomes the fifth captain in the franchise's history.
Weber, a second-round pick of the Predators in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, will be entering his sixth season with the team. He scored a career-high 23 goals in 2008-09 and in 320 NHL games has recorded 64 goals, 166 points and a plus-16 rating. His cannon of a shot from the blue line has helped him put up 30 power-play goals during that time.
Weber was named to the Olympic All-Star Team after tying for second among all tournament defensemen in points (2-4-6), and ranking second on the team in average ice time (20:37). He also earned a silver medal with Canada at the 2009 World Championships in Switzerland while being named best defenseman of the tournament and Canada’s top player, and won gold medals at both the 2007 World Championships and 2005 World Junior Championships.