The Ottawa Senators have been named the NHL’s “Canadian Hockey Team of the Week” for the week ending July 25.
The “C” stands for Canadian.
And if you’re wondering why it is the Ottawa Senator is the only team that has an NHL team name, the answer is simple: the Senators played their inaugural season at TD Place in Ottawa.
The Senators also have a long history of naming their jerseys after Canadian icons, and while their current name may not sound like the same as the Ottawa Maple Leafs, the Senators have done their part to help create a connection between the NHL and Canadian sports.
In fact, the first jerseys worn by the Ottawa Sens were made by the Toronto Blue Jays, who played their first game at Rogers Centre in 1994.
It is fitting that the Senators name comes from a team that played its first game in Ottawa in 1913, when the Senators were the first professional team in the country to be named after a Canadian athlete.
The team’s first Canadian coach, Ken Dryden, is also an Olympic gold medalist in the 1928 Winter Olympics.
After Dryden was fired in 1964, the Ottawa team went on to win a gold medal in the 1954 Winter Olympics in Los Angeles, becoming the first Canadian team to win at least three Olympic gold medals in the same season.
In 1961, the team won a silver medal in Sydney, Australia, when they defeated the Soviet Union 6-4 in the opening match of the men’s hockey final.
In recent years, the NHL has been looking to capitalize on its Canadian roots.
This past January, the league announced it would use its new logo and uniforms in an effort to promote the game of hockey to more Canadians.
The league also announced that a new “NHL 2.0” season would start this fall.