The Ottawa Senators looked a lot different the last time they made the Stanley Cup Final in 2007.
Enforcer Chris Neil is the only current Senator who would remember playing in that Cup Final, which didn't end so well for his team as they lost in five games to the Anaheim Ducks.
The 2007 Stanley Cup Final was a really good time for both the Senators and Ducks. Both teams were achieving franchise-best attendance numbers, and the hype was incredible.
In the ten years since then, these two teams have gone down similar paths. They've been consistent, but not good enough to win a Stanley Cup. And as a result, attendance has been dropping and fans are becoming inpatient.
This season, the Senators have a chance to get sweet revenge on the Ducks team that spoiled their first-ever trip to the Stanley Cup Final.
It will be no easy task, however.
Ottawa still has to win three more games against the defending Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins in the Eastern Conference Final, while the 114cardiac kids
But there is a significant chance hockey fans could see a rematch of the 2007 Final this season on the cusp of the 10-year anniversary since either of these teams made the Stanley Cup Final.
A Ducks-Senators Final couldn't come at a more crucial time for both teams. Statistically, the Ducks and Senators have been very consistent teams over the past two decades.
The Ducks have only missed the playoffs twice in the last ten seasons, while the Senators have made the playoffs in 14 of the last 18 seasons. But consistency is only good when it leads to championships.
The closest the Ducks have been to a Stanley Cup recently was in 2014-15 when they lost a thrilling seven-games series to the Chicago Blackhawks (the eventual Cup Champions) in the Western Conference Final.
The Senators haven't made it past the second round since their Finals appearance in '07.
Fans of both teams have watched their fair share of early playoff exits lately, leading to attendance drops in recent years.
Ottawa's average attendance has dropped from 18,085 to 16,744 over the past year, while the Ducks' average attendance has dropped by about 1,000 over the past two seasons.
But the Senators' attendance dilemma has become more concerning since 2,000 seats were reported empty in the one of their home games in the Conference Semifinal against the New York Rangers.
Success in sports brings together both hardcore and fair-weather fans, but sometimes a championship is what's needed to convert casual fans to returning customers who will fill arena seats the next season.
Currently the Ducks and Senators rank 21 and 22 in the league in average attendance, so another Stanley Cup Finals appearance couldn't come at a better time.
There's still a lot of hockey to be played before a Ducks-Senators Cup Final becomes even close to something guaranteed.
But a Ducks-Sens Final would achieve two things: it would give long-time fans a chance to re-live the best seasons in their team's history313green314