Remember when Jason Spezza was a true No. 1 center for the Ottawa Senators?
That seems like a long time ago. In his last 12 games, he has produced just two goals and three assists. His plus-minus rating sank to minus-17.
While Kyle Turris is enjoying a breakout season, Spezza has been stuck in a secondary role playing with lesser linemates.
“I'm not playing as much and I'm not playing in an offensive role as much,” Spezza told the Ottawa Sun. “I'm just trying to help us win games and we're winning games.
“But I expect myself to get on the board every night and contribute offensively. It's not happening but I feel I've played pretty good hockey and I'm trying to do what is best for the team right now.”
What about that ugly plus-minus rating?
“It's been a frustrating stat for me this year,” he said. “I've been plus-20s in the past. This year when something goes wrong it seems I'm on the ice for it. It is what it is. I'm mature enough of a player to know I have to be on the ice for more goals for, than against.
“Sometimes things happen: You're on the ice for empty-netters, bad bounces, but to get your plus-minus up you have to score some more goals. We went through a tough stretch at the start of the year. I don't have to worry about plus-minus, I have to worry about helping to get us wins.”