Senators' Bobby Ryan records hat trick in second game back

Joanna Estrada
February 28, 2020

The veteran forward played in front of Ottawa Senators fans Thursday night for the first time since he entered the NHL/NHLPA player assistance program, and he recorded a hat trick in a 5-2 win over the Vancouver Canucks.

It had been over 100 days since Bobby Ryan last played an National Hockey League game at the Canadian Tire Centre for the Ottawa Senators.

His fifth career three-goal game started off with a redirect of a Nikita Zaitsev shot over the shoulder of Canucks goalie Thatcher Demko.

"I took the fact that I was doing this for a living for granted for a while", Ryan told Sportsnet after the game.

Fans were quick to cheer Ryan on Thursday, giving him a standing ovation and chanting his name.

His second goal, scored late in the third period, was impressive as he kicked the puck to his stick before scoring. He also had a fight in the contest and was named the first star.

He scored the third goal into an empty net 19 seconds later, and he got emotional on the bench as fans went wild.

Ryan had four shots and played almost 16 minutes in the Senators' 3-2 loss to the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena on Tuesday, his first game back since entering the program on November 20.

"I was trying the white-knuckle thing and do things the wrong way", Ryan said.

"I guess you could call it a panic attack, but it was more a realization that the route that I was going had no good end in sight and that's not just professionally, that's personally. It was just an incredible evening". "I never doubted that they would be behind me and they never let me down, so it was nice that we all got to enjoy this night as a group".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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