Fortunately for Ottawa’s Bobby Ryan, his return to Anaheim to visit old fans and old friends, but this time in a different uniform, might be so quick and painless that nobody even realizes it happened. After playing last night in San Jose, the Senators travelled to Anaheim early this morning, and will be gone soon after the final buzzer sounds. No time to sit and dwell on old times, not quite enough hours to chat with multiple beat writers that he still knows by name. Not enough time to be remorseful for the trade that was simply bound to happen.
There was, however, plenty of time for him to suffer a loss against his former team. The Ducks controlled the play from the outlet, scoring their first goal just 27 seconds in, and adding another less than four minutes later. They continued to dominate for the remainder of the game, and the Senators never really had a chance.
Nonetheless, the future looks bright for Ryan and the Senators. After becoming the infamous number two draft choice behind Sidney Crosby in 2005, a year in which there were very few quality prospects available, Ryan finished his junior eligibility and joined the Ducks in 2007 for a partial season, before being send to the American League for development. By the time he played more than a half season in 2008-09, he averaged almost a point per game, and then went on to pot 147 goals and 289 points in 378 games in Orange County.
Already in five games with the Ottawa Senators, Ryan has scored three goals and five points and leads the team in both categories. He was always in the shadow of Corey Perry, Ryan Getzlaf, and Teemu Selanne in Anaheim. But with the departure of Daniel Alfredsson this offseason, and the subsequent pickup of Ryan, the Senators have found the new face of their team in the young Cherry Hill, NJ native -- a team that has great promise and talent, and possibly the ability to very soon make a legitimate run at a Stanley Cup for the first time since 2007, when they lost to, that’s right, the Ducks.