Thursday, September 12, 2019

Mark Borowiecki Autographed Card

(As per years past, this is a twin-post with my "regular" blog, where I predicted the Ottawa Senators would finish eighth in the Atlantic Division in 2019-20).

Earlier today, Mark Borowiecki, Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Ron Hainsey were named the alternate captains of the Ottawa Senators, and for the second straight season, no one will get to wear the "C", as the captaincy remains vacant since the Erik Karlsson trade at last year's training camp.

My guess is Borowiecki, Pageau, Brady Tkachuk and Thomas Chabot are the front-runners to carry the torch in the future, but the Sens may feel Chabot or Tkachuk is the leading candidate at the moment but too young for the time being, as they are still on their ELC (rookie contract).

Borowiecki has never played a full 82-game season so far in the NHL; his career-best was the 70 games he suited up in in 2016-17, which enabled him to lead the league in penalty minutes with 154, which in turn led to his starring on this "Retro" variant of card #594 from Upper Deck's 2017-18 O-Pee-Chee set and League Leaders sub-set, which he signed in blue sharpie last season:
I mentioned it previously, but this bilingual card (and entire set, truth be told) is very poorly translated, because the French text, Les Dirigeants De La Ligue, does not translate to League Leaders but instead to League Managers.

Barring an extremely generous lottery win, I fail to see how a 30-year-old stay-at-home defenseman with a $1.2M cap hit playing for the Sens could also have the means and find the time to own a team and manage it.

That being said, I like the Sens and have for a long time. And while I live in the heart of Montréal, they're the most affordable local pro hockey I have, as the Habs are out of range and boring (plus I boycott them for a variety of reasons including the P.K. Subban trade and the re-hiring of Claude Julien), the Laval Rocket isn't much cheaper, and at least the Senators' players are endearing and nice, and making the trip there allows for a mini-vacation (I usually make a weekend out of it).

I'm extremely confident that the bunch of kids GM Pierre Dorion has put together will be the foundation of a very good team down the line, and I hope the young veterans who are leading them now (Borowiecki and Pageau chief among them) will be still there to watch them shine five years from now.

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