Prior to Daniel Alfredsson's arrival in Ottawa, the Senators were a laughing stock in the NHL, winning just 33 of their first 216 games. It was the worst record after three seasons for any expansion team in league history, and it almost seems impossible to lose that many games. Such is life when Norm Maciver is your leading scorer.
While first-round picks Alexei Yashin, Alexandre Daigle and Radek Bonk were disappointments for one reason or another, it was Alfredsson, a sixth-round pick in 1994, that proved to be the cornerstone of the team.
Alfredsson made an immediate impact his rookie season, leading the team in scoring with 61 points. The next season, the Senators qualified for the playoffs for the first time and started a run of 11 consecutive postseason appearances, a streak that ended this year. He's spent his entire career with the Senators and signed a contract extension in October, complete with a no-movement clause, that pretty much guarantees he will retire in Ottawa as the franchise's all-time leading scorer.
Draft Year: 1994
The second of Ottawa's sixth-round picks, Alfredsson was selected No. 133 overall, one spot after Anaheim took forward Bates Battaglia. Other notable picks around the NHL included Ed Jovanovski, Ryan Smyth, Milan Hejduk and Eric Lindros' brother, Brett Lindros.
Why He's On My List
One of the better two-way wingers in the league, Alfredsson plays in every situation for the Senators and has had his best seasons after the age of 30. His career mark of .99 points-per-game is ninth best among active players, while he's averaged nearly 1.20 points-per-game since the 2002-03 season (the year he turned 30). Like every player on the Senators, his production dropped a bit this past season, and it was the first time since 2001-02 he failed to average over a point-per-game. He's the captain in Ottawa, a five-time All-Star, winner of the Calder Trophy as the league's rookie of the year and a Gold Medal winner in the Olympics. A complete player.
Obligatory YouTube Video
Daniel Alfredsson sends the Ottawa Senators to their first Stanley Cup Final.