After many years of frustrating snubs, today is the day that Ottawa Senators legend Daniel Alfredsson finally gets his due when he is inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. In honour of the legend himself, this edition of Links, News, and Notes is the Alfie Edition. Sure there are other things happening in the hockey world, yesterday DJ Smith announced that Thomas Chabot had suffered a concussion and would be out at least a week for instance, but for today at least the greatest Senator ever gets the stage to himself:
- You can always count on Ian Mendes to deliver some of the best Sens-related writing and his profile of Alfie for the Athletic ($) is more than up to the task. There are lots of great anecdotes, but my favourite was this bit of classic Alfie leadership:/
Several Senators players vividly the recall the night Alfredsson pushed back against head coach Paul MacLean during the 2012-13 season.
MacLean kicked over a garbage can, raging at the Senators for a lackluster first period. In the middle of MacLean’s tirade, Alfredsson stood up and said, “Paul, get the f— out of our locker room. We’ll figure this out.”
MacLean stared at Alfredsson for several seconds and then turned and walked out of the room.
“One hundred percent that happened,” Condra says. “I actually think coaches want that sometimes. They get tired of delivering the message all the time. They want their players to police the locker room. … And Alfie did that.”
- Bruce Garrioch’s also pulled together a detailed re-telling of how Alfredsson came to be a Senator. I will note here that the bit about Ottawa hesitating to draft their future captain because they had already taken two Europeans is a very unpleasant reminder of just deeply ingrained some of those biases still were in the 90’s.
- Garrioch also got some nice quotes from both former teammate Jason Spezza and long-time rival, and countryman, Mats Sundin about Alfie’s induction.
- If you need even more testimonials, here’s a whole lotta other people saying nothing but nice things about him:/
- In the lead-up to this summer’s vote, our own Beata had a piece making the case for why Alife should be included. Everything she wrote that day is still true today, and I must say that it feels really good to not have to keep making the case for such a deserving candidate yet again. Alfie belongs in the Hall.
- Everyone who is a fan of the Sens likely has their own personal favourite Alfie memory. Mine is his 400th goal, because I was in attendance with my family. I’ve lived in Toronto for nearly twenty years now ,but almost every year I go back to Ottawa for the holidays and we all find a time to see a Sens game. Awfully nice of Alfie to wait until I was there in person to see it live. /
I also love just how excited both Erik Karlsson and Jason Spezza are for him; it just goes to show you how well-liked Alfie was.
- Lastly, the Sens’ match-up with the New York Islanders gets underway at 5:30 this afternoon, and the team has said that they will broadcast the induction ceremony live once the game has concluded. So if you are so inclined to enjoy the moment with some fellow Sens fans, get on down to the Canadian Tire Centre! /