Agozzino named team captain

BERNIE PUCHALSKI, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:33 AM ET

The naming of Andrew Agozzino as captain of the Niagara IceDogs shouldn't be taken as confirmation former captain Alex Pietrangelo won't be returning from the St. Louis Blues.

"We haven't heard anything," IceDogs general manager Dave Brown said. "We just thought it was time to name a captain and, if he comes back, he comes back."

Brown talked to Blues general manager Larry Pleau last week and was told the NHL team has yet to decide what to do with Pietrangelo. The IceDogs haven't talked about what to do with their captaincy if Pietrangelo returns to the OHL squad after the world junior hockey championships.

"If Petro (Pietrangelo) was to ever come back, he and Andrew have a close enough relationship that we would cross that bridge when we come to it," Brown said.

Agozzino was told he had been named team captain prior to the team departing for a road game Thursday in Barrie. The 18-year-old Kleinburg resident expected either he or Alex Friesen would be handed the role. But, he says, nothing changes in regards to his role on the team.

"Everyone is a leader on this team and it's not just one guy. It's a collective thing," the 5-foot-9, 185-pounder said.

Agozzino follows Michael Swift and Pietrangelo in the role and the 2007 IceDogs first-round pick plans to take characteristics from each captain.

"Swift was more of a quiet leader while Alex was more upbeat," he said.

Brown says Agozzino was the logical choice to become the team's newest captain.

"He's well-spoken, he's a guy that leads on and off the ice and he's the voice of reason. He's the guy that makes guys listen."

Agozzino made the team as a rookie in 2007.

"He has a special relationship with his teammates and he makes guys accountable," Brown said. "He makes guys work hard and he thinks a lot like you need to do if you're a captain."

Agozzino has been one of the most consistent IceDogs this season and leads the team in goals (18) and points (31) in 30 games played. He has not gone without a point for more than one game the entire season.


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