Spezza surgery opens door for Turris to break through

Jason Spezza's absence could be a turning point in Kyle Turris' career. (kaatiya/Wikimedia Commons)

Jason Spezza’s absence could be a turning point in Kyle Turris’ career. (kaatiya/Wikimedia Commons)

By: Chris Messina


It’s Kyle Turris’ time to shine.

The Ottawa Senators announced today that Jason Spezza is out going to undergo back surgery and will miss an unknown amount of time. The hope is that he can return for the last few regular season games and be ready for the playoffs.

While the Senators no. 1 center is recovering Kyle Turris is going to get a chance to make his General Manager look like a genius for signing him to a five year extension with a cap hit of $3.5 million that will begin next fall.

Right now he’s looking like one of the league’s best bargains with $1.4 million dollar hit this season as he is clicking at a point-a-game pace through seven games. The Senators oppositions have undoubtedly taken note of his emergency as a strong second line center behind Spezza but now it’s going to be different.

The other team is going to key in on the 3rd overall pick from the 2007 draft. He’s going to be the one facing the other teams top checking lines and best defense pairing. It’s all part of the process in being bumped up a spot on the depth chart, but it could be a blessing in disguise as the Senators are going to know what they have in Turris.

At the moment the trade they pulled off near the beginning of last year to acquire him from the Phoenix Coyotes is looking pretty good. They gave up David Rundblad whom, they acquired with their own first round pick in 2010 from the St. Louis Blues and sent a second rounder from last June to the Coyotes in the deal as well.

Senators coach Paul MacLean faced him in the playoffs as a member of the Detroit Red Wings coaching staff the spring before when his team swept Turris’ Coyotes in the first round. But the up-and-coming center had three points in four games and it impressed the man who was soon to be his head coach in Ottawa.

He’s looking more and more like the player Phoenix believed they were getting when they selected him 6 years ago at the draft podium in Columbus, Ohio. But now for the first time in his career he’s on a team that has a chance to win and he’s going to be the guy down the middle, first line, first power play unit etc.

If he can make the adjustment to how teams are going to play him with Spezza out then it looks like the Senators have got what they bargained for.


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