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Pierre Gauthier didn't tip his hand as to who will be the next captain of the Montreal Canadiens. ((Ryan Remiorz/Canadian Press))

The Montreal Canadiens will name a captain before the start of the NHL regular season.

General manager Pierre Gauthier said Monday there will be a few candidates for the job but gave no hint of who will be chosen.

"The process is ongoing," he told reporters. "What happened during the playoffs and before when we had to push hard to make the playoffs at the end of last season, that's where a leadership group formed inside the team.

"Now the core of the team understands better who the leaders are."

The team's last captain was Saku Koivu, who left as a free agent after the 2008-09 season.

Leading candidates for the job are defenceman Andrei Markov, forwards Brian Gionta and Scott Gomez. Rearguard Josh Gorges is also a possible candidate.