No one is having a worse offseason than the Ottawa Senators

OTTAWA, ON - MARCH 9: Erik Karlsson
OTTAWA, ON - MARCH 9: Erik Karlsson /

The Ottawa Senators traded Erik Karlsson for whatever San Jose dug out of its ear — an excellent way to tank for a top pick the Sens won’t have.

If there’s a team that’s had a worse offseason than the Ottawa Senators, and I mean any sport, then I certainly can’t think of it and I doubt any fanbase is going to volunteer themselves as the answer.

Today was the coup-de-stupid, as they shipped off best-in-the-world defenseman Erik Karlsson to the San Jose Sharks for spare parts. Imagine the guys on the train who play three-card monty and Sharks GM Doug Wilson is the guy holding the cards and Ottawa GM Pierre Dorion is the rube. Except instead of losing just his money, when Dorion stands up he’ll be without his wallet, pants, and any sense of worth.

Let’s go through it. Dylan DeMelo was once something of a defensive prospect for the Sharks. In three seasons he never merited more than #6-#7 d-man time, and his biggest feature seems to be that his last name is almost a Lou Rawls song.

Josh Norris is a decent pick-up. He was the Sharks’ first-round pick last season and was effective, though hardly dominating, in his first season at the University of Michigan last year.

Rudolfs Balcers put up a pretty impressive season in the AHL last year and could end up a middle-line scoring winger.

Chris Tierney still has time on his side, and his 40 points last year as a third-line center suggest that if absolutely everything goes right and the planets align and some faraway start lasers a gamma-ray across the galaxy right onto Tierney himself and no one else, he could bump up to a second or third center on any team that matters though.

The Sens also get a host of picks, which will either be a 1st in 2019 or 2020. They’ll only get ’19’s if the Sharks miss the playoffs which will be utterly impossible to do with Karlsson in tow in the Pacific Division. The pick haul is good but far from great.

So in review, the Senators got two mid-level prospects at best, two “guys,” and three picks that could all not be first-rounders and are all not in this upcoming draft. Also, keep in mind thanks to the Matt Duchene trade, the Senators don’t have a first-round pick this year because they opted to keep this year’s. There’s no question the Senators will be the worst team in the league, have the best chance at generational talent Jack Hughes at #1, and then watch him toddle off to Denver.

All this for the best defenseman on the planet.

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Things are a dumpster fire in Ottawa right now. From the controversy between Mike Hoffman’s girlfriend and Karlsson’s, to the incompetence of keeping this year’s pick instead of next year’s, to the Karlsson debacle, to the endless stream of players side-eyeing the team in one way or another, to trading for Matt Duchene when they had no need of him, to ownership calling out fan loyalty and threatening to move the team.

We could go on.

This is Python-esque stuff. The Sens have bottomed out but can’t reap the benefits of that for nearly two years, which means those players are three or four years away from even appearing in Ottawa. You can’t write this stuff.

For this season, the Sens will be what we all thought the Golden Knights could have (and should have, honestly) looked like last year. It’ll be a collection of whosits and whatsits and misplaced and bewildered hobos skating around to 60 losses. In front of no one.

A real league might seize the Senators from Melnyk. In the NHL, he’s just a run-of-the-mill mope running a team. Fans deserve to be angry and shouldn’t stand for this kind of incompetence.