The 2019 NHL Trade Deadline was always likely to be painful for Ottawa Senators fans. The franchise was all but guaranteed to lose it’s best two forwards, a third that was having a career year, and possibly a defenceman in the shape of the oft maligned Cody Ceci.
As the weekend unfolded Matt Duchene and Ryan Dzingel were moved to Columbus in separate deals, while Mark Stone was traded to Vegas minutes before the deadline passed.
Stone’s departure seemed like a kind of symbolic low point for the franchise on the ice, with a husk of a team now left to finish out the 2018/19 season.
The already strained fan base then received another body blow when the proposed move to LeBreton Flats fell through on Wednesday.
Surely it can only get better?
Talking about legitimate Cup contenders is fun.
There are always points of contention regarding how good a team’s goaltending might be, whether an offence can produce enough goals or if it’s smart to pair those two guys together on defence.
Chaos is also fun – it gives us other things to talk about. The silly things that happen in hockey, the things that defy wisdom or the thing that are simply unexpected.
It’s what makes the sport enjoyable; probably even more so than a technical breakdown of a two teams respective powerplay strategies….
Here are six things that could happen over the next six months that could be chaotic, surprising or simply fun:
As things stand, the Ottawa Senators projected cap hit for the 2019/20 season stands at $45.5 million, with an NHL roster of 14 players.
The salary cap floor for next year is likely to be somewhere in the region of $62.3 million, based on a $3.5 million increase on the 2018/19 numbers.
Spending in the region of $17 million to sign eight guys shouldn’t be seen as that much of a stretch, right?
Sens and Nucks swap goalies, Pete Chiarelli shuffles his deckchairs, Stars management gets angry and the NHL announces three outdoor games in 2019/20.
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The recent Maple Leafs-Canucks and Penguins-Ducks trades also come under the microscope, while the Ottawa Senators soap opera continues.
The new NHL season is right around the corner, and the Atlantic Division has one bona fide contender, one team hoping to start over and six teams who could do great things….or nothing at all.
Montreal’s PK Subban is one of the most dynamic players in the NHL. He’s a candidate for the Norris Trophy and a pivotal part of the Habs defence.
He also crossed a line last night – slashing Ottawa’s Mark Stone across the wrist, receiving a game misconduct for his troubles.
Yet some claim a great injustice has befallen the Toronto native – when really he has no one to blame but himself.