Today's post is about the #15. The number has been quite successful for the Senators over the years, with several players providing significant contributions.
Dave Archibald C 1992-1993, 1993-1994, 1994-1995
A native of Chilliwack, BC, Archibald made the jump to the NHL in 1987-88 as an 18-year-old and spent two seasons with the North Stars (Minnesota drafted him 6th overall in 1987) before being traded to the Rangers. Archibald is part of a sizeable group of Sens alumni who represented Canada at the Olympics during the early 90s, earning a silver medal in 1992. After two years with the Canadian national team, Archibald returned to the NHL when he joined the Senators for the team’s inaugural campaign. His second appearance on this list, Archibald wore #15 for his first three seasons with the team. He played just seven games with the Islanders after signing with New York as a free agent following his final season in Ottawa and finished his career with stops in the IHL, Italy, Germany and Sweden.
Shawn McEachern LW 1996-1997, 1997-1998, 1998-1999, 1999-2000, 2000-2001, 2001-2002
McEachern was born in Waltham, Massachusetts in 1969 and was a star at Matignon High School in Cambridge. His strong high school play was rewarded when he was drafted 110th overall by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 1987 NHL Draft. He went on to excel at Boston University for three seasons and was a Hobey Baker finalist and All-American. In his final season in college, he netted 82 points in just 41 games. He played for the US National Team in 1991 and suited-up for the red, white, and blue the following year at the 1992 Winter Olympics. When the Olympics finished, Shawn joined the Penguins for 15 games at the end of the regular season. Impressing the Penguins brass, McEachern played 19 playoffs games that season, recording 2 goals and 7 assists on his way to winning his first – and only – Stanley Cup ring. He was traded to Ottawa during the 1996 off-season for Trent McCleary and Ottawa’s 3rd round pick (Eric Naud) in the 1996 Draft. While McEachern’s offensive declined in his last season in Ottawa, he scored 20+ goals on four separate occasions and twice surpassed the 30-goal total for the Sens. Since retiring in 2006, McEachern has turned to coaching: as an assistant at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, Northeastern University, and Salem University. He is currently Assistant Director of Athletics, Admissions Assistant and coach at the Rivers School.
Peter Schaefer LW 2002-2003, 2003-2004
The native of Yellow Grass, Saskatchewan was drafted 66th overall in the 1995 NHL Entry Draft by the Vancouver Canucks after a breakout season with the Brandon Wheat Kings of the WHL. Schaefer would spend two more seasons with Brandon, leading the team to a Memorial Cup birth as well as earning the Four Broncos Memorial Trophy as league MVP in 1997. After a few seasons split between the Canucks and their AHL affiliate, Peter was traded to the Sens before the 2002-03 for Sami Salo. Schaefer spent four seasons in Ottawa, wearing #15 for the first two. After being traded by the Sens, Peter spent two seasons with the Bruins and had the final year of his contract bought out in June, 2009. He did not play hockey in 2009-10 and spent his time training in hopes of returning to the NHL. He earned a tryout with the Canucks in 2010 and was signed to a two-way deal for the 2010-11 season. However, his contract was mutually terminated in November, 2010 and he finished the season with ERC Ingolstadt in the DEL. A free agent as of the 2011-12 season, Schaefer and well-travelled NHLer Mike Sillinger joined the Balgonie Bisons of the Qu’Appelle Valley Hockey League in their attempt to qualify for the Allan Cup (the national championship for senior amateur hockey) in 2012. The team failed to qualify for the tournament.
Dany Heatley RW 2005-2006, 2006-2007, 2007-2008, 2008-2009
Born in Freiburg, West Germany in 1981, Dany played two seasons for the Wisconsin Badgers. Heatley was drafted 2nd overall by the Atlanta Thrashers in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft. His time in Atlanta was both successful – he won the Calder Trophy in 2002 – and controversial. After requesting a trade, he arrived in Ottawa for Marian Hossa and Greg de Vries. Heatley got off to a sizzling start for the Sens, recording points in his first 22 games. This smashed Hossa’s previous team recorded of 13 games and was one back of Wayne Gretzky’s league record 23 consecutive games upon joining the Los Angeles Kings. The first Senator to score 50 goals in a season, he reached the mark in each of his first two years with the club. As rapid as his success in Ottawa was, things went south just as quickly. Requesting a trade at the end of the 2008-09 season because he was unhappy with his role under Cory Clouston, Dany quickly became one of the most loathed Senators of all-time. Rejecting a move to the Edmonton Oilers, Heatley ended up in San Jose, a preferred destination. However, since his departure from Ottawa, Dany’s play has declined considerably and is no longer the elite sniper he once was.
Zack Smith C 2010-2011, 2011-2012
Zack Smith was born in Maple Creek, Saskatchewan in 1988. He was drafted 79th overall by the Senators in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft after four seasons with the Swift Current Broncos and an amateur tryout with the Manitoba Moose of the AHL. Smith spent the majority of the 2008-09 and 2009-10 seasons with the Binghamton Senators before securing a place in Ottawa during the 2010-11 season. Smith made the move to #15 during the 2010-11 season from #47.
Best #15: Dany Heatley
While Shawn McEachern put up solid numbers during his time in the capital, Heatley was a superstar. Still the only Senator to ever score 50 goals in a season, he holds the Ottawa record for goals and points in a season. It’s hard to imagine anyone breaking those records any time soon.
Worst #15: Dany Heatley
Gah. Worst. Ever. Senator. Of any number. Or maybe that's Yashin. Tie for worst.