Fresh surroundings will aid certain Ottawa Senators prospects in their development paths this season. Former college forward Alex Guptill is embarking on his pro career, while Swedish forward Tobias Lindberg left his country to join the Oshawa Generals in the OHL. Meanwhile, 2014 draft pick Kelly Summers is leaving the Ottawa valley region to test his abilities in the NCAA.
The lack of a first round selection in the 2014 NHL Draft hurt the Ottawa Senators, but the arrival of two forward prospects via trade helped generate some excitement. Acquired from the Dallas Stars as part of a package deal for Jason Spezza, OHL forward Nicholas Paul is a player on the rise, poised for a breakout year in 2014-15. Fellow new arrival Alex Guptill, on the other hand, is looking to rebound back to elite form after a forgettable final season with the Michigan Wolverines.
The Ottawa Senators are in for another interesting, potentially franchise-altering offseason. Following former captain Daniel Alfredsson's footsteps last summer, the 2013-14 Senators captain Jason Spezza is likely on his way out. Two more top-six forwards, Ales Hemsky and Milan Michalek, might be following suit. With valuable assets to shop around, general manager Bryan Murray will remain busy leading up to the 2014 NHL draft.
It’s been a busy year for Edmonton Oil Kings’ forward Curtis Lazar — drafted 17th overall by the Ottawa Senators in the 2013 NHL Draft, a key player on Canada’s U20 World Junior Championship entry, and now a second go-round in the Memorial Cup. And it’s safe to say the Senators are pleased with his progress — at least, that’s what he thinks their actions mean.