#3 Dale Hunter
Coming in at number three on our list is Dale Hunter. Before there was Tom Wilson, Hunter was the tough guy on the team and he was the first captain to lead the Caps to their first appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals. Although the Caps got swept in that Finals, it came at the hands of a talented Detroit Red Wings team.
During Hunter’s tenure with the Washington Capitals, the team was very physical and was a nuisance to play against. The Caps grinded hard to the point where nobody looked forward to playing against them.
A big part of that was because of Dale Hunter’s physicality. Hunter not only was a tough guy to score against but he could beat you up if you messed with him. His leadership caused the Caps to take on his personality. If you can cause your entire team to do that, you are one hell of a team captain.
Despite Hunter’s toughness there was some downsides to him as team captain. Hunter racked up penalty minutes as a result of becoming too hard of a hitter and too aggressive. Later Hunter would use his leadership skills as team captain to coach the Capitals and helped lead them to a first round upset over the Boston Bruins.