I am. So tired of talking about COVID and the NHL’s plan to start playing again in 2021.
The last few months in hockey fandom have tested everyone’s patience, to say the least. We Sens fans have had to get used to a bit of uncertainty over the years, but never at this level. When is the season starting? Is it even going to happen? Will there be a Canadian division or not? Which cities will actually allow hockey to be played? What will the bubbles look like? Is this plan even remotely safe, or good for the players’ well-being? Are we even getting a World Juniors tournament this year?
So this week, even though none of us know when or in what form hockey is coming back, and I’m not even convinced we should have hockey in January, I’m going to throw some positivity out into the world and ask: what are you most looking forward to in the next season, whenever it ends up happening?
Here are a few things I can think of.
Every time I start to feel down on this team, I think about how Tim Stützle is going to be on the roster next season, and suddenly all I want is for hockey to start back up again so I can watch this kid in action.
Watching young players develop in the NHL is so much fun. It will certainly result in a lot of Discourse™, yes, but it’s just great to see the players’ enthusiasm at the start of their careers. They haven’t been ruined by the NHL yet. It’s also just nice to watch a player’s career from the start. You get to figure out how they’re going to fit into the lineup.
Think about this: we’re going to get to watch Tim Stützle’s first NHL game. We’ll get to see his first goal (the first of 4 in the season opener against the Leafs, if there is any justice in the universe), and freak out over his points total in his rookie season. I’m just so ready to stop arguing about draft picks and start arguing about Tim Stützle’s rookie point total.
Those new jerseys, in action
This one is shallow, yes, but think about how nice it’ll be to see these players finally take the ice in those nice new jerseys. We’ve been waiting for them for way too long. Begging for them, actually. And we got them.
We might very well finish at the bottom of the standings yet again next season, but we will look good while doing it, and that at least is more than could be said of the last few Senators teams.
More of Chabot and Tkachuk
And the other guys, of course, but mostly these two, because they’re the core of this team right now, and just so much fun to watch. It’s been way too long since I last watched them play hockey. And I know everyone always overestimates the skills of the players on their own team, but I don’t care: I think Chabot and Tkachuk are elite, and I am so excited to watch them play again, no matter when that happens.
So maybe the Canadian division isn’t happening after all, but you know what I can’t wait to do? Make Habs fans mad on Twitter after the Sens beat them out of pure luck in an ultimately meaningless game because neither team is making the playoffs.
Live tweeting (and writing recaps)
I wasn’t even around last season, so the last time I watched a Sens game live was in spring 2019. Do you have any idea how much I’ve missed writing recaps? Live tweeting games with the boyz on Sens Twitter? And that’s not even getting into the fun of in-person watch parties. I miss the sense of community I get from watching this team and talking about it online with all of you. Also, I think the offseason is rotting our brains. We need hockey back. So badly.
What are you most looking forward to in the new season?