Despite three Eastern Conference Finals appearances, one Eastern Conference Championship, and a Presidents’ trophy, the Ottawa Senators have never been able to grab an elusive Stanley Cup championship. Each failure along the way brings forward new questions of what could have been if things happened a bit differently.
Having begun watching hockey during the 2002/2003 regular season, I know many avid Senators fans have had no shortage of heartbreak over the years. I know my first came that same season when Jeff Friesen of the New Jersey Devils ended the Senators’ hopes of Stanley cup glory in game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals. A moment that left me devastated as a young fan. I remember reflecting on that game thinking: “What-if Hossa never hit the post? Would the Senators be champions?”.
I think it is fun to speculate on these ‘what-if’ scenarios and what could have been in an alternate reality. So, I have taken it upon myself to compile a list of five ‘what-if’ scenarios that I believe would have had the biggest impact on the Senators’ franchise and the ability of the Ottawa Senators to win Stanley Cup championships. For this list, I avoided alternate draft picks because it is too easy to say Ottawa would win if they drafted Pavel Datsyuk instead of another player. Keep in mind that some of these scenarios stem from unconfirmed rumours.
Warning: This list will likely leave you punching the air multiple times over if you are a fan of the Ottawa Senators.