If you were to ask any Senators fan to draw a connection and recall some history between the city of Hartford and the Senators, most would probably answer that it's the place where Wade Redden's career went to die.
While very true, Hartford is also the place where, seventeen years ago today, Daniel Alfredsson scored the first of his ten career NHL hat-tricks (this number includes two postseason hat-tricks).
With Alexei Yashin staging his own contract holdout, a recurring them in these "On this Day in Senators History" pieces that I've been writing, Alfredsson tallied three goals on four shots against Sean Burke and the Hartford Whalers; leading the Senators to a 5-0 win over their Northeast Division rivals.
The hat-trick broke an eight-game goalless drought for Alfie; although with one goal and eight points in his first ten games that season, it was not like he was being held off of the scoresheet regularly. If anything, in retrospect, this game probably helped boost his confidence because he tallied five goals in the six games that followed. He would eventually finish the season with 61 points in 82 games.
By adding an assist that night, Alfie's four-point night marked a season high for the Swede; ultimately helping him capture the organization's first major NHL Award - the Calder Trophy awarded to the NHL's best rookie.
As a minor footnote to the Alfie's accomplishment, Don Beaupre beat the odds, recording the second shutout in franchise history with 41-saves and getting one of his six wins in 33 appearances that season. With Martin Straka and Bryan Berard, he would eventually be dealt later in the season in the infamous three-way deal with the Islanders and Maple Leafs that netted the Senators Damian Rhodes and Wade Redden.