Senators by the Numbers: #31
Peter Sidorkiewicz G 1992-1993
Born in Dąbrowa Białostocka, Poland in 1963, Sidorkiewicz was drafted 91st overall by the Washington Capitals in 1981. He played junior hockey for the Oshawa Generals, where he moved with his family after relocating from Poland. He made his debut with the Hartford Whalers in 1987-1988, playing one game. An injury to Mike Liut in 1988-1989 gave Sidorkiewicz an opportunity to play regularly and he responded, earning a spot on the 1989 NHL All-Rookie Team. He played two seasons as the Whalers starter and was claimed by the Senators in the 1992 NHL Expansion Draft. Ottawa's starter in the franchise's inaugural game, he spent just one season in the capital. In June, 1993, he was traded to the New Jersey Devils for Craig Billington, Troy Mallette, and a fourth round pick. Sidorkiewicz's time in New Jersey was unsuccessful; his arrival in the Garden State coincided with Martin Brodeur's. Consequently, Sidorkiewicz played just four games for the Devils over the course of five years, spending the majority of his time in the AHL and IHL. He retired in 1998, and joined the coaching staff of the OHL's Erie Otters in 1999. Working as a goalie coach, an assistant, and head coach, he was relieved of his duties in March, 2013, after 14 years with the team.
Don Beaupre G 1994-1995
Born in Waterloo, Ontario in 1961, Beaupre was drafted 37th overall by the Minnesota North Stars in 1980. He appeared in the NHL All-Star game during his rookie season in 1980-1981 as well as the Stanley Cup Finals (although his North Stars would be no match for the New York Islanders). He was traded to Washington in 1988, but was eventually pushed out by the emergence of Olaf Kolzig. He was acquired by the Senators for a 5th round pick in the 1995 Entry Draft (Benoit Gratton) in January, 1995. During his first season in Ottawa he wore #31 and led the league in losses with 25. Beaupre retired in 1997 after 17 NHL season. He currently owns Beaupre Aerial Equipment. His company is based out of Minneapolis allowing him to be a Wild season's ticket holder and active in the Minnesota NHL Alumni Association (both former North Stars and former Wild player are eligible).
Ron Tugnutt G 1996-1997, 1997-1998, 1998-1999, 1999-2000
Born in Scarborough, Ontario in 1967, Tugnutt was drafted 81st overall by the Quebec Nordiques in 1986. After a successful OHL career with the Peterborough Petes, he spent the first few years of his NHL career as a backup goalie in Quebec. During the 1990-1991 season, Tugnutt stopped 70 of 73 shots in a game against the Boston Bruins that ended in a tie. He had established himself as a quality goaltender while playing for the worst team in the league. Despite his strong play, Tugnutt bounced from the Nordiques, to the Oilers, to the Mighty Ducks, and then to the Canadians before landing with Washington's AHL team, the Portland Pirates. His strong play with the Pirates (including leading them to the Calder Cup Finals) led to a contract with the Senators. He beat out Mike Bales for the back-up position, and then split time with Damian Rhodes, before securing the starting position. A month before training camp began in 1998 he was in a boating accident, breaking several ribs. Tugnutt had an excellent season in 1998-1999, leading the league with a 1.79 GAA and had a .925 SV%, good for second in the league. His strong play led to his selection to the 1999 NHL All-Star Game. He was traded to Pittsburgh by Ottawa (along with Janne Laukkanen) for Tom Barrasso in March, 2000. He again made 70 saves in a classic quintuple overtime loss against the Flyers. The game was so gruelling that Tugnutt lost 12 pounds and was worn down for the rest of the series. He was the starter for the Columbus Blue Jackets during their inaugural season and broke a league record for most wins on an expansion team with 22. His final season in the NHL was hampered by injury and he retired in 2004. Tugnutt worked as a colour commentator for HNIC after the 2004-2005 lockout before joining the Oshawa Generals coaching staff. He is currently a coach with the Peterborough Petes.
Martin Prusek G 2001-2002, 2002-2003, 2003-2004
Born in Ostrava, Czechoslovakia in 1975, Prusek was drafted by the Senators 164th overall by the Senators in 1999. He began his professional career in 1994 with HC Vitkovice of the Czech Extraliga. He came over to North America in 2001-2002; he spent the majority of the season in the AHL, but did make his NHL debut, playing one game for the Sens. For the next two seasons, Prusek backed up Patrick Lalime before playing in the Czech Republic during the lockout. He would return to North America for one season with the Columbus Blue Jackets once play resumed, but spent most of the season in the AHL. He finished the 2005-2006 season in the Russian Super League and spent the rest of his career playing in Russia and the Czech Republic. He attended the HC Vitkovice Steel training camp in 2011, but retired to accepting a coaching position with the team.
Alex Auld G 2008-2009
Born in Cold Lake, Alberta in 1981, Auld was drafted 40th overall by the Florida Panthers in 1999. An NHL journeyman, Auld has played for 8 different teams in his career as a backup. He signed a two-year deal with the Sens as a free agent in 2008. Auld had two spells with the Sens and wore #31 during his first season in Ottawa. Auld was part of the revolving door in Ottawa's crease in 2008-2009, splitting time with Martin Gerber and Brian Elliott. He was traded to the Dallas Stars in July, 2009, for a 6th round pick. Auld currently plays for EC Red Bull Salzburg in Austria.
Mike Brodeur G 2009-2010, 2010-2011
Born in Calgary in 1983, Brodeur was drafted 211th overall by the Chicago Blackhawks in 2003. After a successful campaign with the Rochester Americans in 2008-2009, Brodeur signed as a free agent with the Senators. He spent the majority of his time with the Senators in Binghamton. He recorded a shutout against the New York Rangers in his second NHL game, and started his NHL career 3-0-0. A serious hip injury prevented him from playing for more than a year before resurfacing with the Las Vegas Wranglers of the ECHL in March, 2012. He is currently a member of the Orlando Solar Bears of the ECHL.
Curtis McElhinney G 2010-2011
Born in London, Ontario in 1983, McElhinney was drafted 176th overall by the Calgary Flames in 2002. After four successful seasons with Colorado College, he joined the Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights of the AHL. He made his NHL debut in 2007 with the Flames. He became Miikka Kiprusoff's backup in the 2008-2009 season. After stops in Anaheim and Tampa Bay, he was claimed off waivers by the Senators on February 28, 2011. He finished the season with the Sens and then signed with Phoenix as a free agent. He currently plays for the Springfield Falcons of the AHL.
Best #31: Ron Tugnutt
Ron Tugnutt was the best goaltender this franchise had before Craig Anderson.
Worst #31: Mike Brodeur
Brodeur is the most forgettable on the list. Sorry Ryan Classic.
Who wore it best?