The Ottawa Senators are a professional ice hockey team in the NHL based in Ottawa, Ontario. They began playing in the National Hockey League (NHL) as a 1992 expansion team. They are the only major league team in the Canadian capital.
The original Ottawa Senators existed from 1893 until 1934, winning nine Stanley Cups, while changing their name a couple of times, before the team folded after the 1934/35 season as the St. Louis Eagles.
A revived, strong new Senators team emerged in 1992.
Although the team’s management filed for bankruptcy in January 2003, the team itself went on to play and despite the off-ice problems, Ottawa won the Presidents' Trophy in 2002/03, finishing with a league-best 113 points.
The team was purchased later that year by pharmaceutical magnate Eugene Melnyk.
In the first round of the 2004 NHL playoffs, the Senators lost to the Toronto Maple Leafs for the 4th time in 4 series against the Leafs. However, the Toronto goalie who came out laughing was now Ed Belfour, not Joseph. By now, Ottawa had developed a strong rivalry with their Ontario cousins and there was a great deal of pressure on the team to finally defeat their archrivals.
The Senators' early 2006/07 season was characterized by a struggle to reach .500 (an even win-loss ratio). On January 3, 2007 the Ottawa Senators acquired centre Mike Comrie from the Phoenix Coyotes in exchange for prospect Alexei Kaigorodov. Ottawa was in need of another centre (due to the loss of Spezza, Vermette and Fisher for an extended period of time), and was eager to shed Kaigorodov, who was suspended for refusing an assignment to the AHL's Binghamton Senators after being sent down, instead opting to play in Russia. Phoenix will continue his suspension, meaning he will not be paid until he returns to the NHL.