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Turris 'can't wait' to keep building on team's success

Senators centre anxious for opportunity to extend his growth into 2012-13 season

Tuesday, 21.08.2012 / 3:47 PM / Features
By Rob Brodie  - OttawaSenators.com
Senators centre Kyle Turris wants to keep building on the career numbers he posted in 2011-12, his first season in the Ottawa lineup after a December trade with the Coyotes (Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images).

Almost from the moment his first season in an Ottawa Senators jersey came to an end, Kyle Turris has been thinking about the next one.

Needless to say, it can't start soon enough for the man who raised the roof at Scotiabank Place in a major way with a game-winning overtime goal in Game 4 of the Senators' first-round playoff series against the New York Rangers.

"I can't wait," Turris said with a grin and an eye toward the 2012-13 season. "From the minute that Game 7 (against the Blueshirts) finished last year ... it was a tough one to take but, at the same time, right away I was excited to start next season and get back at it, so we can carry on our ways and grow."

For the 23-year-old Turris, the December trade that brought him to Ottawa from the Phoenix Coyotes opened a world of new possibilities. In 49 games with the Senators, he produced 12 goals, 17 assists and 29 points — all National Hockey League career highs. Turris believes the best is yet to come, telling ottawasenators.com late last season that he believes he can be a 30-goal scorer someday.

With that thought in mind, the native of New Westminster, B.C., stayed in Ottawa for more than two months after the Senators' season ended in late April, working with conditioning coach Chris Schwarz to build more strength — something he believes he's achieved. After spending some time at home in British Columbia and visiting with his girlfriend's (Julie) family in Minnesota, Turris returned to the capital at the beginning of August to continue preparations for the new season.

"It's been great working with Schwarzy on things we want to get better at over the summer — getting stronger and putting on some weight," Turris, the No. 3 overall pick of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft, said following a skate at the Bell Sensplex. "I feel really good."

That would also sum up the feelings of a team that, after pushing the Eastern Conference champion Rangers to the limit in April, feels poised to achieve even better things in the season to come.

"We're all confident in our abilities as a team," said Turris. "It's a lot of work to jell and combine together as a team over the course of a season. That's why we had so much success over the course of last season and into the playoffs. We're just going to have to do that again this year and everyone's excited to get back at it."

Turris is also looking forward to the prospect of having free-agent acquisition Guillaume Latendresse, who signed with Senators on July 1, on his left wing. The 6-2, 230-pound Latendresse was a 27-goal scorer with the Minnesota Wild and Montreal Canadiens in 2009-10 before running into injury troubles the last two seasons.

"I think it's exciting," Turris said of that possibility. "It's going to be fun. He's a big, skilled player and he's obviously a good player. It's going to be a good addition for us and fun to have him as a part of our team."

The extra time he's spent in Ottawa this summer has also given Turris a chance to immerse himself into life in the capital and he's been a familiar face at community events. It's a city he's truly happy to call his hockey home.

"I love it," said Turris. "I enjoy every minute of it (here). It's fun to go out and support different charities and learn more about them. I really enjoy going to those events and spending time in the city."

STANDINGS

ATLANTIC DIVISION
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
3 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
4 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
5 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
6 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
7 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
8 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Karlsson 82 20 54 -15 74
J. Spezza 75 23 43 -26 66
K. Turris 82 26 32 22 58
C. MacArthur 79 24 31 12 55
B. Ryan 70 23 25 7 48
A. Hemsky 75 13 30 -15 43
M. Michalek 82 17 22 -25 39
M. Zibanejad 69 16 17 -15 33
M. Methot 75 6 17 0 23
P. Wiercioch 53 4 19 -1 23
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Anderson 25 16 8 .911 3.00
R. Lehner 12 15 6 .913 3.06
SENS ARMY FAN POLL