It’s been a wild week in the NHL with every single team in the spotlight. No spotlight was as big as that in Seattle though as the Kraken finally have a full roster! While it was a somewhat uneventful expansion draft with most picks leaked earlier and zero trades to make up for it, it was an entertaining week nonetheless.
Lost in all the commotion was the release of the NHL schedule on Thursday and the flood of emails from the Ottawa Senators on renewing season tickets! It’s always exciting to see the full schedule, makes the season seem closer and gets you excited about making plans.
This season especially should be different: fans will finally be back, especially in Canadian markets where very few fans were able to attend any games. In Ottawa, this is the first season in a long time where fans are finally getting optimistic and excited about the team and I’m genuinely curious if fans will finally be ready to forgive and start filling up the stands again. I expect a slow start for health precautions but knowing this fanbase, we should be back in full force in no time.
It’s an 82-game schedule and not every game means as much, sorry Minnesota Wild, but which games do fans really look forward to?
It seems everyone’s first reaction is to find which Sens game falls on their birthday! Most people get excited about the Sens playing on their special day but personally, I check to make sure they don’t. As I get older, I like my birthdays to be as calm and peaceful as possible and having a Sens game on that night is definitely not something I want to worry about because I certainly will. Not everyone shares the sentiment of course but it is definitely a date that everyone looks for on the schedule. My birthday this season is game free but they are playing an away game against the Vegas Golden Knights the day before so maybe a quick celebration game could be in the plans?
Regardless of the opponent, this is by far the most exciting game of the season. We’ve been without Sens hockey for far too long and without live Sens action for even longer. I hope it’s a full house while I understand there could still be hesitancy by then. Maybe we’ll have a Captain Brady Tkachuk by then to lure back all the fans.
Spectacle of a New Team
Everyone is excited to see the Seattle Kraken officially enter the league and for Sens fans, that opportunity falls on January 6th when the Sens meet them in Seattle and on March 10th when we welcome them here at home. I’m not sure how I feel about this new team yet but if I can make the home game, I know I will be there if only to say I got to see their first game in Ottawa.
The Big Rivals
I always love starting the season with a big game and this season, the Sens will start the season with back to back wins against the Toronto Maple Leafs! How buzzing will that home opener be (hopefully with Sens fans). We don’t meet again until January, so hopefully the Sens will make these two games hard to forget.
Unfortunately, we will have to wait until the end of February before getting a chance to destroy the Montreal Canadiens but that will make it more fun as games will probably have a larger impact at this point in the season.
People say it’s time to move on but seeing Erik Karlsson play in Ottawa will always be a treat as painful as it will be seeing him on the other side. I know a few fans will want to make sure they get a glimpse of their old Captain live in action that one time in the season that they can.
Everyone has their own reason for getting excited about certain opponents. I like watching the Edmonton Oilers when they’re in town. Others get excited to see Alexander Ovechkin or maybe get a glimpse of the new kids in town like Alexis Lafrenière or Quinton Byfield. For me, I always like attending one game against the Buffalo Sabres as they were the opponents when I attended my first ever Sens game and that just has a personal memory to me. What special teams, players or events do you look forward to?
Which Game Are You Looking Forward To?