Eleven Days from now, Daniel Alfredsson will take to the ice at Canadian Tire Centre for the first time wearing a uniform other than that of the Ottawa Senators. That is, assuming he is recovered from his current groin injury that has him on the shelf at the moment.
Taking into account the things that went on in the offseason, it is still disappointing to me that the two sides could not make the necessary strides to get a deal done and keep Alfie in Ottawa for the remainder of his career.
A quarter of the way into the season, I am now at peace with the fact that he has moved on, and although it would have been nice to see him finish his career in Ottawa, it was not meant to be.
I realize there are still a lot of bitter feelings on how the relationship ended, but for one night it should be fitting to pay tribute to the man who put the franchise on the map so to speak. In the days leading up to the return of Alfredsson, we will count down the top 11 moments of his time in a Senators jersey.
#11 – Daniel Alfredsson Wins Messier Leadership Award
I know it comes down to the opinion of one man, Mark Messier, but the fact that Alfredsson was selected for the award gave legitimacy to his longtime tenure as captain of the Senators. Outside of the City of Ottawa, there were always questions about his leadership ability and this award, presented ironically enough just days before he jumped ship, provided more evidence to those outside of Sens Army that he was indeed a true character player.
The award came on the heels of the infamous “probably not” answer to a question that didn’t need to be asked, but you have to give him credit for his honesty. Years earlier, he boldly guaranteed that the Senators would beat the Leafs in the playoffs in 2004 (and go on to win the Cup), and is still being mocked for that bravado and confidence to this day, so he was often in a no-win situation.
Daniel Alfredsson taking the 2013 Mark Messier Leadership award ranks #11 in my Daniel Alfredsson moments in Ottawa.