Ottawa Senators defenseman Cody Ceci was awarded a one year, $4.3 million contract earlier this month by a judge, after going through a particularly contentious negotiation and arbitration process. Cecil was reportedly seeking a $6 million annual deal, while the Senators countered with an offer of $3.35 million annually.
Armed with a new deal, you would think that Ceci would be focused on putting negotiations and the entire arbitration process behind him, but he admitted to TSN 1200’s Lee Versage yesterday that he’s still a “little sour” with the way things went down.
Cody Ceci to Lee Versage on @TSN1200 on going thru arbitration process with the Sens last week:
“It wasn’t a fun process…It was worse than I expected. You’re definitely a little sour after the whole process.”
Ouch… tell us how you really feel, Cody.
And here’s the thing… it’s not the like Sens can afford to have any more “sour” players around the organization. General manager Pierre Dorion was already forced to jettison sniper Mike Hoffman after it was uncovered that his fiancee had been allegedly harassing captain Erik Karlsson and his wife Melinda. The team also went through contentious negotiations with star forward Mark Stone. Oh… and goaltender Craig Anderson has reportedly requested a trade. Yeeeesh… what a nightmare in Canada’s Capital.
For what it’s worth, the 24 year old Ceci does appear poised to take the next step in his NHL career, a career that he has spent entirely with his hometown team. In 366 career games Ceci has 25 goals and 92 points, but his 10 goal and 26 point performance from 2015-16 indicates that he has some untapped offensive potential. The Sens are hoping that with an increased role and with another offseason of development under him that Ceci can blossom into the top four blue liner they hope he can be and, frankly, the blue liner that he’s now paid to be.
With Ceci and Stone now both on one year deals, the Senators stand to lose both players in addition to Karlsson and Matt Duchene, as well. The team will also be forced to part with their first round pick as part of the Duchene trade with the Colorado Avalanche. Double ouch.