There are two games left in the Ottawa Senators 2013-2014 hockey season. In their games remaining, the Senators will host the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday and will then finish the season with a visit to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Needless to say, it's been a disappointing season for the Senators and their fans. Early predictions for the season had the team seeded in the top ranks of the league, going deep into the playoffs. As of Tuesday, however, the team found themselves mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. In Ottawa, you could hear the tiny heart strings of Sens fans snapping. Enough of the sad stuff though.
Yes, this year has been a hard one on most of us filled with anger, confusion, disappointed, etc. There are a lot of things to start looking forward to though. This year was a big learning experience for many of the young players on this team, notably Jared Cowen, Patrick Wiercioch, Cody Ceci, Robin Lehner, and Mika Zibanejad. I feel that they can take this season and work towards improvements for next season. I also think that Paul Maclean will reflect on this season and I'm sure he's learned a lot too that he can fix. There were a few call-ups who were impressive as well, especially Mark Stone and Mike Hoffman. The Senators also had career seasons out of Clarke MacArthur and Kyle Turris. We learned Bobby Ryan was hurt - so we can expect him to regain form next year. My point here is that there were shining moments this season and I look forward to next season.
The off-season may bring about some (un)expected changes, with signings, re-signings, and player trades, but once again, sometimes change can be good for a team or a player. Take Ales Hemsky, for example. He basically did a 180 in his brief stint in Ottawa. So we could get a player looking for a scenery change who could surprise us, or we could get a nice return from one/some of our own players looking for a change (yes, I'm talking about the Jason Spezza rumours).
Anyways, with two games left in this season, the Senators should be playing for pride - give us fans two more wins and re-group for next year.