Sep 20, 2012 - 03:37 MDT


Hunter Shinkaruk seemed to be the natural pick as the next captain of the Medicine Hat Tigers, even if the young left-winger wasn't so sure of it.

When he arrived in Medicine Hat as a 16-year-old in the 2010-11 season, the Calgary product almost immediately earned a spot on one of the team's top two lines. His role grew as a 17-year-old sophomore playing on a high-scoring line with Emerson Etem.

On Wednesday, the Tigers coaches told Shinkaruk that he would be the captain for the upcoming campaign. As he turns 18 near the middle of October, it is believed that Shinkaruk could be the youngest captain in team history.

"I don't know if it was natural," said Shinkaruk, whose Tigers open the season Friday against the Hurricanes in Lethbridge. "I am the guy who just loves to come to the rink.

"There is nothing more I want to do in my life than play hockey. The opportunity that I have coming to the rink to play for this organization is something that I take a lot of pride and honour in."

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