Feb 1, 2014; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Ottawa Senators right wing Bobby Ryan (6) looks on during their game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. The Maple Leafs beat the Senators 6-3. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports
Ottawa’s management group granted the wishes of most Senators fans, announcing a long-term extension for Bobby Ryan.
Bobby Ryan gets a 7 year/7.25 million$ AAV, which provides security and assurance to Ottawa. After paying a hefty price to obtain the services of Ryan last summer, letting him walk as a UFA or receiving a poor deadline return would be detrimental to the franchise.
Long rumours and speculation of Bobby Ryan meeting up in Philadelphia can all be put to rest. He’s here for the long term.
The AAV of the deal shows that Ottawa gave a financial commitment to the future of the franchise and to Bobby Ryan. The Stanley cup was mentioned by Erik Karlsson in a press conference, and via Melnyk comments from last season. Ottawa has the core to build a Stanley cup team in a few years, but is still missing a few key pieces to elevate to the next level.
In what Bobby Ryan called a “more important” announcement the Senators entrusted their faith in a young 24-year-old swede, who you may have heard of.
Erik Karlsson has 5 years left on a multi year deal and is here for the long haul as well. At 24 he becomes the 3rd youngest captain in the league. With only Gabriel Landeskog and John Tavares below him in age.
Karlsson is coming off a season which saw him put up 74 points after a full season of rehabilitation on an achilles injury. He’ll be heading into a fully healthy season and will have high expectations. He’s the 9th captain in Senators history and will be expected to juggle on-ice responsibilities with off-ice ones.
This shouldn’t be a problem for Karlsson, and he’s shown how he’s an elite on ice talent before. At 24, however how can he shift his responsibilities to be the number one guy in the leadership core. Karlsson should use his resources to the best of his ability as he’ll have Chris Phillips and Chris Neil to help him as both are veterans who have juggled both sides of the game for quite some time.
Chris Phillips may be considered the biggest “snub” for Sens captain, if there is one. He’s spent his entire career in Ottawa and has paid his dues. At 36, and a 2-year deal that’s likely his last. How the franchise recognizes him in the future will be interesting.
Headlines today assure a positive start to the Season for Ottawa. Bobby Ryan is here and Erik Karlsson is the newly crowned king. If Ottawa decides Curtis Lazar is a fit for the roster, we can all be rest assured of a positive outlook heading into the season.