As I’m typing this piece, the Ottawa Senators agree to terms with Tierney, avoiding arbitration and settling on a two-year deal. Is this fate? Maybe.
Tierney is certainly not as flashy, or gifted offensively as some of the other available options but make no mistake, he’s equally or perhaps more effective and certainly more experienced than most options. With 48 points in 2018-19, followed by 37 points in 19-20, Tierney is by far the most NHL established point producer on this list. The problem is that Tierney lacks the flash and overall ability to break a game open in its most critical moments. His production is somewhat surprising because when you look at the sheer number of points at a glance, it seems like a very good season but remembering notable moments seems quite foggy at least from my perspective. That being said, he’s one of the most subtle, effective, 2-way players that Ottawa has in their system and there’s no reason that he’s not at least a viable option to play this role.
So there you have it, 6 different players and yet you can make a case for each one of them as easily as you can make a case for none of them playing as Ottawa’s no.1 centre this year. In the case of the younger players, they’re simply too young to play the most difficult position outside of goalie in the National Hockey League and with the veteran options, there’s really nothing to write home about outside of being good placeholders. Ottawa’s offseason is not over and while free agency remains an option to make an addition to the centre position, none of those available names really stand out as a dramatic improvement over the 6 names in contention internally. To me, either Ottawa gives some dispersed opportunity to each of these players or they look to make an instant improvement via trade. Time will tell.