Chris Phillips has been a member of the Ottawa Senators since he was drafted first overall in the 1996 NHL Draft. He has played 1,122 games for the Senators. According to Don Brennan of The Ottawa Sun, he realizes that he could be playing his last few games for the Senators in the next week before the March 5 NHL Trade Deadline.
"“Nobody thought (Wayne) Gretzky would get traded either, or Ray Bourque … you can go on and on,”"
Phillips has played his entire career in Ottawa and obviously loves the city. His family lives there but he realizes that they might have to move soon.
"“Obviously my life is here. I’ve been here since Day 1 and right now no, I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else. But I have to be realistic about pro sports and everything that goes on with it, that there’s a possibility that could happen some day.”"
Brennan notes that the Senators could try to re-sign Phillips as they have a lot of young defensemen and he can provide leadership to them. However, Brennan also notes that the Senators thought they had Daniel Alfredsson signed last off-season. Where’s he playing now? The Senators may not want to take the risk. Brennan suggests that Phillips wants more than a one-year deal and would be willing to accept a trade if he is no longer in the Senators’ plans.
"“I feel like I’ve got lots of hockey left in me… I don’t want to get into talking about what’s been discussed, as far as contract stuff, but yeah, that’s how I feel.”“Yeah, if or when this team says ‘thanks for everything’ and I feel like I still have hockey left in me… I’m sure there are other scenarios, but you have to be realistic about this game too. If there comes a day when this team feels like I’ve done all I can do for them, and there’s no part for me, that’s where a decision comes of either I agree with them, or there’s another team that’s willing to give me a chance… We’ll see if that ever happens.”"
With these rumors flying around, he might not being playing in Ottawa for very much longer. He realizes that his family is a very big factor in this.
"“I’d be lying if I came home and just ignored the whole thing… It’s obviously a bigger deal to a family, with kids, and what you would do in that situation and everything that surrounds that.“Yeah, there’s been obviously lots of discussions if something was to happen. That’s tomorrow, that’s in the summer time, that’s two years from now … at any time.”"
Could we be seeing another end of an era in Ottawa?