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Sens Announced New Guiding Star
The Ottawa Senators just wrapped up what was arguably one of their most productive weeks in years. In the last few days, the Sens have announced their new guiding star, reinforced the bonds between their core players, and locked in their most profitable members for a considerable amount of time.
On October 2nd, the team announced that its ninth captain would be defenseman Erik Karlsson. Karlsson was the obvious candidate for captain, based on his consistent performances, unwavering dedication to his team, and exceptional skills. In addition, it was announced that forward Chris Neil and veteran defenceman Chris Phillips will share the role of alternate captain.
Karlsson will replace legendary Senators captain Jason Spezza, who made his NHL debut during the 2002-2003 season. This summer, Spezza opted to end his time with the Sens, and was traded to the Dallas Stars. Karlsson follows in the steps of past captains such as Laurie Boschman, Mark Lamb, Alexei Yashin, and the iconic Daniel Alfredsson.
Furthermore, the Sens also signed forward Bobby Ryan with a $50.75 million extension that will keep him on the team until the 2021-22 season. The extension will increase Ryan’s annual average to $7.25 million per season, making him the Sens’ highest paid player. This follows after the announcement in August that stated that Clarke MacArthur will remain on the team until the 2019-2020 season. Clearly, the Senators are attempting to create a solid foundation of strong players. Ryan and MacArthur are both powerful players, and their relation to the team has been significantly enhanced with the extensions. However, the new contracts can also be perceived negatively, as now the Ottawa Senators are stuck with Ryan, for better or for worse.
Can Karlsson rise up to the occasion as the new team captain? Will he be able to lead the team to victory? Can Bobby Ryan show that he deserves to be the team’s highest-paid player? Find out when the Sens commence their regular season on October 9th at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena!