It’s sad when it happens, and you just hate to see it. Your favorite team’s management is so abysmal that you simply cannot withstand any more punishment. We all have our limits. And at this point, if you’re a fan of the Ottawa Senators, Pierre Dorion and Eugene Melnyk have likely broken you. The trades made by Senators management should create confusion and more confusion amongst the Senators fanbase. The only question you should be asking is why?
Why would you trade a third-round pick for Travis Hamonic when you could have snagged him on waivers for free? Why couldn’t you sign Nick Paul to a reasonable contract? Why did you sign Michael Del Zotto only to bury him in the AHL? What’s going on with Evgeny Dadonov?
Senators fans have been through so much over the years, but when the Hamonic trade broke yesterday, I thought to myself enough is enough. They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting different results. I think if you are dedicated and truly love this team, it’s time to take an indefinite leave. You owe it to yourself to see what else is out there. Here are four new teams Senators fans can get behind for the foreseeable future.
New York Rangers
From a hockey perspective, this team is a lot of fun and should be solid moving forward. They have the 2022 Vezina Trophy lock Igor Shesterkin and a deep lineup that has the potential to make a run in the playoffs. They have solid defense led by Adam Fox and Jacob Trouba. Also, they have as deep a forward group as anyone in the league led by Artemi Panarin, former Senator Mika Zibanejad (it hurts, doesn’t it?) and potential Rocket Richard Trophy winner Chris Kreider. They also have elite prospects, and the sky is the limit on how far they can go.
As far as the city goes, everyone loves New York. It’s one of the greatest cities in the world, and it’s only a seven-hour drive from Ottawa. You can easily head over there for a weekend, catch a game at the iconic Madison Square Garden, check out a late-night comedy show, and cap it off with a slice of pizza from just about anywhere. Don’t even get me started on the delis and bagels, oh boy. Just consider the happiness you will experience if you drop the Senators and instead cheer for this original six-team with a bright future. This should be hard to pass up.
Toronto Maple Leafs
Honestly, this might sound outrageous, but the transition might be easier than you realize. By jumping on the Toronto Maple Leafs bandwagon, you can go from cheering for a team with insufferable management to a team that is 100 percent cursed and haunted. They have great players like Auston Matthews, John Tavares, and Mitch Marner that you will fall in love with only to have your spirit crushed once playoffs roll around. It doesn’t matter how good they are or how hard they try, they will break your heart every year in ways you could never even imagine.
Before you yell at me in the comments, hear me out. By cheering for the Maple Leafs, you get to stay within the province. Sure, you probably see the Maple Leafs as your biggest rival with an extremely annoying fanbase, but now you can be one of them. Also, Toronto is only a five-hour drive away. Not sold yet? Get this: their arena is right downtown in the heart of the city. I swear, there are restaurants nearby and everything. Just imagine the possibilities.
The world is your oyster. You’ve been through so much why not treat yourself to something great. The Colorado Avalanche are arguably the best and most exciting team to watch in the league right now. As the current favorite to win the 2022 Stanley Cup, the Avalanche are deep and extremely likable. They have the most exciting defenseman in the league in Cale Makar, as well as elite forwards in Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen, Gabriel Landeskog, and Nazem Kadri. This team is stacked on paper and should be a contender for years to come.
Another selling point for the Avalanche is it’s a chance to say get out of the Eastern Conference. You probably don’t even want to associate with anything that reminds you of the Senators. And by leaving the conference, you can focus on different teams and experience fun new rivalries. Also, if you’re ever looking to go on a ski trip, you can fly into Denver, check out a game and then you’re off to the slopes. Remind yourself that this isn’t your fault and that you deserve nice things.
You’re probably a fan of anything Tkachuk at this point. Every hockey fan secretly wishes they had Brady or Matthew Tkachuk to call their own. While saying goodbye to Brady is going to be hard, cheering on big brother Matthew should be a smooth transition. The Calgary Flames are one of the nicest surprises in the NHL this season. Everything has been going their way, and they are looking like a legitimate contender in the Western Conference. They’re getting elite goaltending from Jakob Markstrom and are likely to have four different 30-goal scorers by the end of the month in Tkachuk, Johnny Gaudreau, Elias Lindholm and Andrew Mangiapane. The team is built properly, with every player knowing their role and executing at a high level.
As a Senators fan, you are undoubtedly used to the dark cloud of free agents potentially leaving after the season. Well, this transition should be nice and easy then. Gaudreau, Mangiapane, and Tkachuk are all due for a hefty raise this offseason, and there is a concern that they won’t be able to keep all three in Cowtown. By cheering for Calgary, you can enjoy the rest of the season and the playoff run only to spend the offseason dreading your new favorite players leaving. It should be like riding a bike.
When I was a kid my parents got me a t-shirt that said “Eat Sleep Hockey” and this is how I turned out. I’m an NHL obsessed never-was with only the very best takes. All of my opinions are genuine and I’m in constant need of validation. I am covering the Ottawa Senators and follow me on Twitter @Bradleychooo