Redwic: You started off on the right track. Murray and Hickey definitely are different types of players. But then you quickly stumbled with your comment that Murray 'is much more talented' than Hickey. BOTH are highly talented hockey players (in different ways) and both are likely to have long NHL careers. Hickey's puck skills, vision and hockey sense are superior to Murray's (though Murray's are very good too). Hickey is much more likely than Murray ever to end up on the number one power player unit on an NHL team. Conversely, Murray, with his bigger size and stronger physical presence, is more likely than Hickey to be on the top penalty killing unit. Regardless, both are very talented hockey players and it is a misnomer to say that one is 'much more talented' than the other.
Your next misstep was your assertion that Murray 'is a better leader off the ice' than Hickey. Based upon what? Murray wearing a 'C' (remember, Hickey wore one too)? Post-draft comments in the press from Howson? Instead, why not talk to some of your beloved Silvertip players or even coaches. They will tell you that Murray was anointed captain far too early in his WHL career based upon his hockey ability and skill, not necessarily his leadership ability other than leading by example with hard work and excellent play. They will also tell you that Murray is remarkably quiet and low key in the room, bordering on aloof. A great player with a great future in the NHL, but a 'leader'? Not hardly. Mark my words: Murray will NEVER wear a letter in the show. Not even an 'A'.
Back to Hickey: If you are inferring a lack of talent or leadership due to Hickey's slower-than-expected path to the NHL, you may be unaware that Hickey suffered from and played through multiple and significant upper- and lower-body injuries for three years going back to his final season in Seattle that severely limited his ability to play to his potential. Last season in Manchester was Hickey's first healthy season in hockey going back to 07-08 in Seattle. Finally free of injury, Hickey was Manchester's top defender last season, leading the team in plus/minus, quarterbacking the power play, leading the penalty kill, and earning a spot in the AHL All Star Game. Don't be surprised to see Hickey finally make his mark in the NHL this upcoming season (if there is one), be it with the Kings or elsewhere.