A report suggests the Los Angeles Kings are set to strip the captaincy from Dustin Brown and "move in a different direction."
The 31-year-old winger is the longest-serving captain in team history. He's worn the C since 2008, when he assumed the duties from Rob Blake. During that span, he's led the Kings to two Stanley Cup championships.
Although there's been no official announcement from the team, the move wouldn't come as a surprise. A change has been speculated for years as Brown's game, and his value to the Kings, has deteriorated. He hasn't topped 30 points since the 2011-12 campaign and has been dogged by trade rumors. Brown has six years remaining on a deal that counts $5.875 million against the salary cap.
Anze Kopitar would be the obvious choice to replace Brown if the C does change hands. Kopitar signed an eight-year, $80 million contract extension in January, and an elevation in responsibility might be what he needs to take his game to the next level.