The Ottawa Senators and their fans need to focus on what is positive, after one of the worst weeks in National Hockey League history, and this is what they have chosen to do on Sunday morning with the signing of a veteran blue liner.
The Sens have announced that they have agreed to terms on a contract extension with defenseman Chris Wideman, a fan favourite in the nation's capital. Both parties have agreed to a one year contract extension, which will carry an annual value of $1 million for the 2018-19 season.
The veteran defender was scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1. It will be good for fans to see Wideman back on the ice. He has recovered from surgery Dec. 1 to repair a hamstring that was torn when Pittsburgh Penguins centre Evgeni Malkin fell on Wideman during a Nov. 16 contest at Canadian Tire Centre.
Though Wideman tried to return last season, he couldn’t get medical clearance to do so, but said he would be ready for training camp in September.
This will surely be an uplifting news after Senators general manager Pierre Dorion revealed that his team had to trade forward Mike Hoffman because the team's dressing room was "broken." And while the problem might be fixed following the transaction, there is still way too much happening in Ottawa.
News broke last week that Melinda Karlsson filed a peace bond in May alleging Monika Caryk posted hundreds of derogatory and harassing online messages aimed at her and her husband. Hoffman and Caryk have denied the allegations and have not been charged in relation to the incident, while captain Erik Karlsson keeps considering a trade for a fresh new start.
Then later on, TSN Senior hockey reporter Frank Seravalli reported that starting netminder Craig Anderson could also be on the move. The Senators have been said to be working with agent Justin Duberman to try and find a potential new home.
To see Wideman's familiar face back in the lineup is expected to help the Senators get back on track after such chaos. There is a just a lot happening for the poor Sens. If Anderson is moved and a deal can be made between team management and his agent, it surely indicates that Ottawa is entering a full on rebuild.
At least, Wideman gets to stay in the city he calls home.