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Weekly Question: Thanksgiving Edition

These are hard times but let’s dig deep here

Toronto Maple Leafs v Ottawa Senators Photo by André Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images

With the regular season kicking off in less than a week, Sens fans have one thing clouding their excitement: Are we going to lose Brady Tkachuk? Personally, I think we’ll be just fine, but that’s a discussion for another day.

Let’s all forget that we might lose another franchise player (we won’t), because it’s Thanksgiving weekend and we should all be happy and maybe even able to celebrate with family. We should look at all the blessings that have surrounded us; including those from our favourite hockey team.

If you’re having a hard time finding things to be grateful about when it comes to the Sens, let me help you out with a few reasons we are so blessed to be Sens fans at this very moment.

1) Tim Stützle

While he’ll probably be gone in 3-4 years, we have him now. We get to watch him grow into this magnificent creature right before our eyes. We get to watch him make smiley hugs part of this team’s core and trademark. We will get to reminisce about him when he eventually becomes too expensive. Mostly, we should be grateful for all the great picks and prospects he’ll be able to get us when we trade him to the Edmonton Oilers.

2) The new 100% capacity allowance

Who would the Ottawa Senators be if they weren’t showered with low attendance talk? At 50% capacity, the arena would have easily been sold out and we’d be at a loss justifying why people didn’t drive too far, didn’t want to pay for parking, or simply didn’t want to watch Michael Del Zotto play while Erik Brännström sat in the press box.

With the 100% allowance, the arena will be at least 30-40% empty and that, ladies and gentlemen, is part of this team’s culture and brand. Get ready for all the excuses we’re going to have to make! I hear Ottawa is going to have a terrible winter this year, so this should be an easy one.

3) Eugene Melnyk

Ok, give me a chance to explain before you smash the screen. Imagine if we had a sane and competent owner who paid all of his star players what they deserved and never got into legal problems with every person he shook hands with. Imagine we could have kept Erik Karlsson or even just Mark Stone and even watched the Sens in a few playoff rounds the past few seasons. Imagine we had signed Brady Tkachuk to an 8-year deal early in the summer and had nothing to worry about right now. Doesn’t that all seem boring to you?

Which brings me to the more serious point of this satire: You may not appreciate it now, but if you took a step back and looked at what Melnyk has done to this fanbase you can almost be thankful for him too. We’re a unique kind of people now. Other fans’ taunts can’t hurt us. We can take any punch thrown at us and yet we keep coming back for more. At this point we’re impervious to the drama. You might even say it keeps us going even when there’s absolutely nothing left in the tank. Tell me about another fanbase in all of sports that is as tightly knit as the Sens fanbase has come to be. Maybe it’s passé now, but who else could have made the Sickos thing work last year? You can’t fake that kind of thing!

The various organizational pratfalls have made us a family. Now imagine we were just a good ol’ boring fanbase who had all the great things and celebrated wins and even Cups. Who would want that boring ordinary life?

So when I step back, I actually see lots of great things this team has given us the last few seasons — weird as that may seem on the surface. But I also want to hear it from you. What are you most thankful for when it comes to our beloved, tragic team?

Lastly, on behalf of the entire Silver Seven Sens, I would like to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!