While the original Ottawa Senators won 11 Stanley Cup titles earlier in the 20th century, the second coming of that team has yet to repeat the feat. However, in a larger and more competitive landscape of the modern NHL that is not a surprise, and the latest rendition of the Senators have been a fairly successful club since their creation in 1990. The future beckons brightly and we can assume that Ottawa is likely to build off their success and become a true force in the league in the near future.
The Senators were created by Bruce Firestone and began play in 1992. The first few years were a great challenge, and the team nearly had the worst season record ever in the league in their first season. Fortunately, the Senators avoided that embarrassment, but the string of poor years helped them assemble high draft picks and build for the future.
A solid core of quality hockey players was eventually formed around Radek Bonk, Marian Hossa, and Alexei Yashin. Towards the end of the decade, the Senators became competitive. They earned their first trip to the NHL Playoffs in 1997 and have consistently reached the postseason ever since. However, their initial playoff appearances often ended in disappointment.
A strong run to the Eastern Conference Finals perked up hope for a Stanley Cup run in 2003 but the team fell to the New Jersey Devils in a heartbreaking 7-game series. Hossa, Daniel Alfredsson, and Todd White were key contributors. However, the club actually had to file for bankruptcy earlier that season and was merely kept afloat by the NHL.
Several years later in 2007, Ottawa did reach the Stanley Cup Finals behind Jason Spezza, Dany Heatley, and Mike Fisher. They actually cruised through the playoffs in dominating fashion but ultimately fell to the Anaheim Ducks in the Finals. That was the closest this team has come to repeating the glory of nearly a century ago.
Since then the Senators have failed to produce in the postseason, though they’ve been respectable in reaching the NHL Playoffs on a regular basis. However, the up and downs have resulted in lots of turnover and fresh new faces. Among the new key players that have become the modern core of the Senators are Kyle Turris, Erik Karlsson, and Milan Michalek. Despite poor preseason hopes in 2012 due to their youth, the team surprised everyone and reached the playoffs. There they lost in the first round.
The following season saw the new look Senators take their talents to the next level, reaching the second round of the playoffs. However, in 2014 the Senators failed to reach the playoffs in a competitive Atlantic Division, despite a winning record. In an effort to become better, Ottawa has continued to recruit and tinker their squad. Now with Clarke MacArthur, Alex Chiasson, Karlsson, Turris, and Bobby Ryan, the team has high hopes for the future. They also have a solid goalkeeper in Craig Anderson. Look for the Ottawa Senators to continue their good play and one day achieve the ultimate Stanley Cup success!
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