There is good news and bad news in the Ottawa Senators-sphere over the last couple days. Let’s take a quick look:
Stutzle Suffers Injury
It didn’t take long for Ottawa’s third overall pick, Tim Stutzle, to have his first “Senators” moment. In practice with his German club, the forward suffered a fractured arm that will require surgery and six to eight weeks of recovery.
While hardly news that anyone would like to see coming out of the draft, it’s really not the end of the world. All indications from the Senators, Mannheim, and Stutzle’s representatives suggest that there should be no long-term impact on his hockey career as a result of this unfortunate event. With the NHL season not scheduled to start until at least January 1, Stutzle has plenty of time to get healthy without this ever impacting his Senators career.
It’s easy to forgive the Ottawa fan base specifically for assuming the worst after a teammate/practice-related injury to a high-performing forward, but it doesn’t sound like this situation will have nearly the same consequence as the Patrick Sieloff/Clarke MacArthur incident did.
Nick Paul Signs
The Senators announced today that they have signed forward Nick Paul to a one-way, two-year contract extension that will pay him $1.35M per season. The money attached to this contract isn’t huge in NHL terms, but the one-way designation is absolutely massive for Paul and his career. He’s earned it.
In Paul, the Senators have themselves a nice option for bottom-six minutes in their forward lines. He was a real bright spot in his first full-ish National Hockey League campaign, generating nine goals and 20 points in 56 games. He’s not a name that’s ever going to bring the same level of excitement as a Josh Norris, or a Drake Batherson, or Tim Stutzle, but he is a name that can provide this team with homegrown, dependable minutes on the fourth line.
Melnyk Has a Plan
The Financial Post published a tremendously interesting read on Eugene Melnyk’s short-term and long-term plans for the Senators. Some of the most interesting tidbits of information enclosed were that he feels the team will win a Stanley Cup within the next four years, and that the team can break even financially with a 6,000-seat, COVID-safe capacity.
He also referenced his desire to have a new arena completed within five years, and the fact that he has no intention of selling the team at any price.
It’s a fascinating, fascinating read. Check it out.
As always, thanks for reading.