Aug 6, 2014, 3:00 PM EDT
Ottawa center Kyle Turris will have new responsibilities on his shoulders both on and off the ice this season.
On the ice, Turris, who turns 25 next month, will attempt the daunting task of filling the void left by Jason Spezza, who was dealt to the Dallas Stars July 1.
Turris has had practice in the No. 1 center role with the Senators filling in for Spezza two seasons ago while the veteran was recovering from a back injury.
“It’s something that I’ve been lucky to learn from Spezz for the three years that I’ve been here,” Turris told reporters Tuesday. “I know what to expect and I’m going to be more prepared this year if I get the opportunity.”
The New Westminster, British Columbia native finished the 2012-13 season ninth among centers winning 49 per cent of his face-offs to go along with 12 goals and 29 points during the lockout-shortened year.
Last season, Turris set career highs in goals (26) assists (32) and points (58). He finished 14th among centers winning 50.7 per cent of his draws.
“I don’t think I’m going to adjust my game, maybe the preparation mentally you have to be a little stronger, outside of that I have to continue to play my game and improve my game,” he said “I think every body is going to have more responsibility to chip in and contribute and it’s something we all understand.
“We’ve played when Spezza has been injured and hasn’t been there and we know what to expect.”
Off the ice, Kyle and wife Julie are expecting their first child next month.
“It’s a new chapter in our life that we both can’t wait to begin,” said Turris.
Turris and his teammates have experience dealing with a veteran leaving, former captain Daniel Alfredsson left as a free agent last summer and the result wasn’t pretty. After qualifying for the playoffs despite having an injury-plauged 20012-13 season, the Senators finished fifth in the Atlantic Division.
“Maybe we’ve learned from it with Alfie,” Turris said. “Now we’ve just got to move forward and get into the right mindset.”
With Turris heading into Year 2 of a five-year, $17.5 million contract, Ottawa will be getting a bargain if he can manage the workload demanded of a first line center. Turris’ cap hit is just $3.5 million.
- Bernier, Leafs agree on two-year, $8.3 million deal 20
- How do Voracek, Giroux compare to the most expensive duos? 54
- Voracek turns monster season into massive eight-year deal 71
- Report: Canucks, Sutter closing in on five-year deal, north of $20M 28
- Voynov serving sentence at jail that once advertised it had flat screen TVs 45
- Report: Bernier and Leafs more than $2 million apart ahead of Friday’s arbitration hearing 12
- Flyers re-sign Couturier: six years, $26 million 41
- Benning calls Sutter a ‘foundation piece’ for Canucks 24
- Here’s a chart that shows which teams have been good/bad at drafting 44
- Penguins sign Fehr to three-year, $6 million contract 22
- Bettman says NHL would have to ‘consider’ putting Quebec City in the Western Conference (71)
- Voracek turns monster season into massive eight-year deal (71)
- Rangers sign Stepan — six years, $39 million (62)
- NBC Sports to broadcast 105 NHL games in 2015-16 (58)
- Trade: Penguins send Sutter to Canucks for Bonino, Clendening (54)