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Dzingel excited for return to Ottawa

by Matt Tidcombe @matttidcombe

Ryan Dzingel is an Ottawa Senator again and he couldn't be more excited.

The 28-year-old forward was re-acquired by Ottawa Saturday, just 11 days shy of the two-year anniversary of the Senators trading him to Columbus.

"It's been a crazy few days," Dzingel said, who is now quarantining in Ottawa. "I thought I could have been traded but I definitely didn't know it would be to Ottawa.

"I'm excited to see everybody and get this thing going."

Between 2015-19, Dzingel played 247 games for the Senators scoring 62 goals and 126 points.

But now he can't wait for game 248 in a Sens jersey.

"I think anytime you get a second chance in anything in life it's pretty special so I'm looking at things through a different lens right now."

There's been a lot of change since Dzingel left. On the ice, only Drake Batherson, Thomas Chabot, Nick Paul, Brady Tkachuk, Chris Tierney, Christian Wolanin and Colin White remain as players Dzingel spent some form of considerable time playing alongside.

With that being said, the opportunity to play with the Sens' new youthful corps is an exciting one for the 343 game NHL veteran.

"I've been watching mostly on the offensive side where they've got some really high-end players and they're going to have some huge futures," Dzingel said. "It's exciting to step in and play with them."

Another thing Dzingel will have to get use to is a new number on his back. Sens rookie Tim Stützle now wears 18 and Dzingel said he didn't approach the German rookie looking for a switch.

After considering reversing the numbers to 81, Dzingel settled on 10. "A lot of goalscorers wear that number," he said.

After finishing the 2018-19 campaign with Columbus, Dzingel signed a two-year deal with Carolina that offseason. He had 29 points (eight goals) last year and in 11 games this season, has a pair of goals and four points.

"I just want to play quality minutes again," Dzingel said. "I know what I'm capable of. I feel great physically and the best I've ever felt shape wise.

"[Just] take it day by day and give it everything I have and try and get some wins here. I don't think my game has changed much. I'm still going to be the same guy. Speed down the wing, slashing and shooting and … use my speed, shoot the puck and put some pucks in the back of the net for the Sens."

Dzingel said he's spoken with head coach D.J. Smith as he continues to count down the days until his two-week quarantine is over. And after not having the role he expected in Carolina, he's just glad to have a second chance with a familiar organization.   

"I'm going to have an opportunity and it's all on me to get the job done and produce so I'm excited for that," he said.

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