Alfie salutes former rival

MIKE ZEISBERGER, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 2:51 PM ET

OTTAWA -- Much of the sizzle surrounding the Battle of Ontario earlier this decade surrounded the matchup between the respective Swedish captains -- Daniel Alfredsson of the Ottawa Senators and Mats Sundin of the Maple Leafs.

For the first time for more than a decade, Sundin did not participate in the provincial rivalry last season, sitting out half the season, then bolting to Vancouver to finish up the year with the Canucks.

And now, with Sundin having hung up the blades back in September, Alfredsson is reflective on the impact his fellow countryman left on the NHL.

"I'm definitely going to try to get through to him some way," said Alfredsson, who has yet to speak to Sundin since the former Leaf retired.

"He had a great career. He was a great role model, especially for a lot of Swedish people.

"He stepped into the footprint of Borje Salming and Anders Hedberg, He set a standard, and it worked well.

"He fit in. Coming to different country, he did a good job getting acclimatized. He portrayed Swedes out there in a very positive way. He did a great job for Sweden."


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