OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) Senators general manager Pierre Dorion says the trade to bring Matt Duchene to Ottawa was a ”no- brainer.”
Dorion and Duchene met with reporters on Monday, a day after the Senators acquired Duchene from Colorado as part of a three-way deal that included sending Kyle Turris to the Nashville Predators.
Ottawa was a goal away from advancing to the Stanley Cup Final last season, and Dorion said acquiring a forward of Duchene’s caliber will allow the Senators to build on that success.
”(Sunday) was a great day for the Senators franchise,” said Dorion, who had expressed his interest in Duchene months ago to Colorado GM Joe Sakic.
”After a great playoff run last year we feel we’ve added an elite forward to our group . someone we feel that can help us take to the next level. We’ve acquired a player that we’re really excited about acquiring. We felt this deal for us was a no-brainer in what we had to give up.”
Duchene has four goals and 10 points this season through 13 games with the Avalanche. The third overall pick in 2009 has 178 goals and 250 assists in 586 games.
”I’m beyond excited, three hours from home, back in my home province with a team that I’ve been keeping my eye on for a long time,” said Duchene, a native of Haliburton, Ontario. ”To see the way these guys play and the skill level and it’s a great market, great fans and I can’t wait to get started.”
Duchene won’t have to wait long to face his former team – the Senators’ next two games are in Sweden against Colorado as part of the NHL Global series.
”It’s going to be very strange,” Duchene said. ”First of all playing a game in Sweden is strange. Back-to-back is tough and then playing against my former teammates and friends is even weirder, but at the same time there’s going to be a level of comfort since I played against these guys in practice every day.”
Giving up Turris was tough for the Senators, but knowing the 28-year-old center was set to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season and a contract extension seemed unlikely this was the best-case scenario.
Turris was looking for an extension of seven or eight years and the Senators weren’t comfortable with that number. Even though Turris went on to sign a six-year, $36 million extension with the Predators.
Duchene has one more year remaining on his $6 million contract after this season. He can start working on an extension as of July 1.
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