Thankfully the rookies are on the ice and the real camps will start up on the weekends for most of the other NHL teams in the league. I think everyone can agree that it was a long off season for not only the Ottawa Senators and their fans but fans of hockey in general. Around the league there has been a lot off off ice issues that have done nothing but make the league look bad, alienate fans and annoy just about anyone with any sort of vested interest in the NHL and professional hockey.
Locally, the Senators ended strong but still had a very disappointing season, making for an even longer off season. Of course there is little doubt where most of the interest lies, that of course is what is going to happen with Dany Heatley. Is he staying, is he going, where does he want to go, where will he not, why does he want to leave, how is this going to affect roster moves by the team? All valid questions and deserving of answers even if none seem close to being answered. The only people that are benefitting are the rumor bloggers that throw out names and "time lines" in hopes that maybe they can will something to happen or to merely keep coming back and getting plenty of hits to see what and if there was any developments....Is it going to happen to day? Nothing happening ...they can’t have him back, and so on and so forth. Ahhhhh Ahhhh Ahhhhh this is an ordeal!
Next there is the situation involving the Phoenix Coyotes. Who is going to own the team? Where are they going to play? Can the NHL get the team and if so how long will they stay in Phoenix? Will Jim Balsillie get the team? Can he move it? If so, for how much? If he get the team will the leagues board allow him to join the league? Can you own a team but not be allowed into the league? Painful questions every one of them. Yes looking at this list the are a lot of questions and there is a noticeable omission right here and that is ANY ANSWERS. I don’t think anyone at least on the fan side of things care. It is too bad because for the first time in maybe ever the team is starting to make progress on the ice and has the potential to be good on the ice...where that ice is may be interesting and who is signing the pay checks is any ones guess.
Then there is the ownership problems in Tampa where Len Barrie and Oren Koules can’t seem to get along and It looks like the NHL has stepped in to try to get one to buy the other one out. Infighting and a lack of direction was a big issue, hopefully Brian Lawton can keep the train rails.
Speaking of ownership, William (Boots) Del Biaggio III , former owner of the Nashville Predators, was sentenced to more than eight years in prison for bilking investors and banks...that is some good due diligence by the NHL, yet Jim Balsillie is bad....whatever.
What we need now is a distraction, and that distraction is players on the ice, competing for jobs, preparing for the season, and even for a lucky few looking to start hot and work their way onto their respective countries Olympic and World Junior rosters.