Daniel Alfredsson (Andre Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images)
Daniel Alfredsson retired this past season, but he’s not ruling out stepping back behind the bench. The 42-year-old former Senators captain said he has no timetable for when he’ll return to work but there is speculation that, whenever he does, it will be a position within the Ottawa organization.
Daniel Alfredsson spent 17 seasons as a member of the Senators organization and it’s possible he could return to the Ottawa bench, this time as a coach.
According to the Ottawa Sun’s Bruce Garrioch, Alfredsson, who was in attendance at an event with Ottawa’s Boys and Girls Club, wouldn’t rule out the possibility of returning to the Senators as a member of the coaching staff. It’s believed that Alfredsson could, at the very least, return to the team in an advisory role, but the possibility of him becoming a coach in Canada’s capital is intriguing.
This past season, with Alfredsson freshly retired, he took the opportunity to coach his sons, an experience that the longtime Senator said he appreciated.
"I really enjoyed coaching the boys and it was a big learning curve for me as well,” Alfredsson told Garrioch. “You know it's easy when you see things on the ice, 'Just do this' but you have to be able to explain it to eight year-olds or 12 year-olds in a way they might understand it and I really enjoy that. It's challenging, and I'm learning a lot from it too. I think I'm helping the kids become better and thinking in a different way than maybe I have with other coaches."
When the decision about Alfredsson’s future comes, however, is anyone’s guess. He told Garrioch that he and his family would be returning to Sweden for the summer and be back in Detroit in time for the beginning of next school year. As for when he will return to the league in whatever capacity he chooses, that will come when Alfredsson is good and ready.
"I don't have a timetable or anything,” Alfredsson told Garrioch. “When you know the time is right, the time is right. At the same time, when you want to do something, you want to go into it and do it right, and not just do it (because), 'I need to do something for five days a week.' ”
Were Alfredsson to return to Ottawa as a coach, it would not be much unlike Scott Niedermayer, who has carved out a spot for himself on the Anaheim Ducks’ coaching staff, the team with which he spent the final five seasons of his career.
Alfredsson is the Senators’ all-time leader in goals, assists, points and is second on the all-time list of games played behind Chris Phillips, who has played one more game in Ottawa than ‘Alfie’ did during his days as a Senator. After playing one season in Detroit, Alfredsson signed a one-day contract with Ottawa on Dec. 4, 2014 and skated in the warmup to retire as a Senator.