The Ottawa Senators were eliminated from the postseason on Friday night. Just as the Anaheim Ducks will now have to wait on Teemu Selanne after their own elimination a couple of weeks ago, the Senators now get to wait as Daniel Alfredsson decides his future.
Alfredsson is obviously not the player he once was, but he’s more valuable to the Senators than simply in regard to goals and assists. He’s past his days of being a perennial 80-point player, but is still capable of producing. And on a young team, his presence is absolutely invaluable.
In 2013, Alfredsson missed just one game, finishing the year with 26 points, including 10 goals. This was a Sens club that had trouble putting up goals regularly, as that point total ranked third on the team, and second among forwards. He went on to average a point per game in the postseason, with 10 points in 10 tilts in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Alfredsson will turn 41 at the end of this calendar year. Which is certainly an indication that he’s moving closer to the end of his career. It’s no secret that he’s big on family, and that could end up being the determining factor in his decision. But this is going to be a tough one.
This Senators team isn’t too far from being a serious contender in the Eastern Conference. They have a wealth of young talent, both on the roster, and coming up through the ranks. With the way they dominated in the first round, they may have very well been a Cup threat, but ran into the no. 1 seed in the East.
The fact that this team is on the cusp of being a serious Cup threat in their conference could be mighty appealing to Alfredsson. He could see this as his one last chance, and could have a farewell tour for one last run. Or he could decide that it’s time that his family came first.
Either way, the Senators are going to be focusing on his decision, as it could have an impact on what they choose to do with their roster this summer.