Mid-Season Review: OttaWHY Senators??? #Stallin4Dahlin
Once upon a time, Erik Karlsson and his team from Ottawa were one goal away from competing for the Stanley Cup. Fast forward to this season and you can find the lonely Senators in the basement of the National Hockey League competing for what seems to be the coveted first overall pick #Stallin4Dahlin. It is a little disappointing, to say the least, that the Sens have completely collapsed this season and have driven fans literally out of the building. The team seems deflated and is reflected through the minimal support offered by the Ottawa faithful. Let’s take a dive into the Sens roster to dissect the team so far for this season.
29th Overall in NHL League Standings
Goals For: 22nd / Goals Against: 29th Powerplay %: 28th / Penalty Kill: 29th
The Senators forward group has been nothing but underwhelming this season. The Sens have never been known to carry high flying offense, but this season has seen almost nothing go in their favour. Thank the man upstairs that we can call Mark Stone (on pace for point per game) our own because the majority of the forward core cannot seem to get anything going. Hoffman is on pace for one of his lowest goal totals in recent years (on pace for 22), Bobby Ryan is playing at an dismal rate given how much his salary is worth (17 points in 32 games), and Derrick Brassard is playing like an average third line centremen. Things looked even worse after dealing Turris for Duchene, but as of late Duchene is looking like the high calibre first line center that he is. Ryan Dzingel has potted 13 goals so far, but has not done much else posting a -5 rating. The bottom six forwards have just not lived up to their potential and has forced management to test (I think most of us could say) one too many forwards with none seeming to stay longer then 20 games with the big club. With the trade deadline looming, look for Ottawa to ship out one of their cornerstone forwards – with the most speculation revolving around Hoffman and Brassard.
Where to start? Who would have thought that losing just one player to the expansion draft could practically destroy an entire back end of a team? Yes, that is an overstatement, but the Senators defense could be compared to the likes of a AAA Midget hockey team. They have no answer for the loss of Marc Methot *cue Johnny Oduya signing*, Ceci is having his arguably worst season as a pro, and again the Sens’ management seems to be shuffling through defensemen to find a solution. Karlsson is still being Karlsson despite the lack of support and the budding rookie Thomas Chabot has been on display and shown some flashes of big things to come.
It seems like Craig Anderson’s time as the starting goalie as come to an end in Ottawa. After such an inspirational year from the veteran goaltender, Anderson just simply has not been himself this season. An interesting stat that Anderson carries with him is the fact that he always has a terrific year followed by a disaster year... hopefully this is the cause. Pack it in a try again next year Senators?
Final Words: Trust the system (the Sens have a plethora of budding forward and defensive prospects), sell your forwards high, and begin planning for the future with the blue crease in mind. Lastly, keep #Stallin4Dahlin