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yave1964

Senators offseason report

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yave1964    1,789

2016-17 A QUICK LOOK BACK usa_today_10003931.0.jpg

WOW what an insane season, what a wild fabulous ride the year was in the Nations capital. Nothing much was expected out of Ottawa this past year as a non playoff team more or less returned the whole team save for acquiring Brassard for Zibenajad a move that at best was viewed as a holding pattern type of move. Then goalie Craig Anderson left the team several times throughout the year to be with his wife who was fighting cancer.Mike Condon came aboard and held them together until Anderson was ready to return (speaking of which, WTH ever happened to the Hamburgler??) Erik Karlsson continued to build his legend as the games best defenseman counting anyone. Mike Hoffman and Mark Stone, two guys with boring names but flashy skills ran the offense while Turris and Brassard proved excellent setup men. Zack Smith and Ryan Dzingel were hard hitting forwards, the defense was untested but rugged, Pageau was solid in the regular season and a stud in the playoffs. They knocked off Boston, upset the Rangers and pushed eventual champs Pittsburgh to an overtime game seven before bowing out. Nobody alive could call this anything but a succesful season.

  As for what went wrong, Bobby Ryan continues to atrophy skill wise, just a shadow of his former self. Marc Methot went from steady and underrated on the back end to Vegas in the expansion draft. They were essentially a two line team and the moves they made did zero to fix that, midseason they added Stallberg, Burrows, Jokipakka, and Wingels between them they appeared in 77 games with a pathetic 10 goals. Hammond withered. At seasons end career Senator Chris Neil was let go.

 Overall, warts and all it was a very satisfying season. 

 

FREE AGENTS

 

STALLBERG and WINGELS signed elsewhere and will not be missed.

 

NEIL plans on playing in 2017-18 but it will not be in Ottawa. CHRIS KELLY wont be invited back until the old timers game.

 

OFFSEASON QUESTIONS:

 

1) WAS LAST YEAR FOR REAL OR A FLUKE?

 

Man that is a tough one, the team seemed to rally around Craig and Nicholle and then in the postseason so much went right from Pageau and his 4 goal game including an overtime winner to Macarthur returning from a concussion to score another OT winner to Karlsson playing at an insane level on one good leg and that was not that good. 

  My opinion is they outperformed expectations but a lot went wrong, see Ryan, Burrows, Neil, Kelly, Hammond, ect..... so it is possible that if some players slip back to earth a bit others may bounce back up so they may be able to replicate the season. The other thing they have going is they are in the worlds worst division.

 

2) DO THEY HAVE ANY KIDS COMING UP TO FILL THE GLARING HOLES?

I am a huge fan of skilled puck moving defenseman Thomas Chabot on defense and a bigger fan of forward Colin White who has mad skills, he will likely start the year on the wing but has the vision to eventually settle in as a much needed middle six center with upside. Forwards Nick Paul and Matt Puempel as well as defenseman Andreas Englund arent quite as skilled as the blue chip Chabot and White but are talented and should stick improving the overall skill level of the team.

 

3) HOW MUCH WILL THEY MISS METHOT?

A lot. He is an underrated shut down guy leaving the defense exposed behind Karlsson and Phaneuf. Chabot will help but is young and inexperienced, the rest of the defense is mostly composed of just bodies. Karlsson and Phaneuf may need to play close to 30 minutes a night.

 

A magical season usually Lightning does not strike twice in the same place but the Sens may surprise.

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