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Thoughts for today:
Craig Anderson: good again?
Anderson has played five games this season, and in the first three, he looked even worse than last season. With back-to-back games of allowing just one goal though, his SV% is now all the way up to .925%. What does that mean? I'm not really sure because it's a tiny sample. However, I was shocked to see that he was able to get that number all the way up to .925% with just two good games.
After seeing how bad he was last season (plus the first three games this season), I'll need to see three or four more games in a row for me to be confident with Anderson moving forward. But there's at least a chance that he's not done yet, and the next 5-10 games will give us a sense of where he is.
Matt Duchene talks starting
Apparently Duchene's agent Pat Brisson has begun talking with Pierre Dorion:
I'm not sure what Duchene is supposed to say besides that he likes it in Ottawa, but seeing this news is better than nothing. The fact that a contract extension is even being discussed is good news. The Senators have gotten off to a fun start and I wonder if that has anything to do with Duchene's desire to stay. Considering what he said in the summer about waiting and seeing to make a decision, I'd be shocked if anything happens before the new year.
However, there might be a lot of smoke leading up to that.
Balcers/Batherson/Chlapik ripping it up
The line of Rudolfs Balcers, Drake Batherson, and Filip Chlapik has been phenomenal in Belleville to begin the year. Chlapik is now hurt, but even with him, Balcers and Batherson were still able to have a great game yesterday. Just look at one of their powerplay goals from the other day and dream about a powerplay that strong in Ottawa:
Through just four games, Balcers has four goals and two assists, Batherson has two goals and six assists, and Chlapik has one goal and four assists (in three games). It's genuinely exciting to follow Belleville, which could not be said of more recent Ottawa farm teams.
Ben Harpur getting too much trust
Harpur was a healthy scratch for the first four games of the season, but in his first two games of the season, he has averaged 21:55 of TOI which is first on the team. That's even four seconds ahead of Guy Boucher's son, Cody Ceci. Most of that is due to a team-high 4:32 per game of short-handed play, but he isn't going to be their most effective penalty killer either.
He had a better first game than normal, but overall I'm not sold on him as an NHL regular, and it's so strange to see him go from not playing at all to the most important player on the team.
Halloween might not be for another 13 days, but that doesn't mean the Senators can't go out and have fun in their hilarious costumes. It's always a fun day on Twitter to see who has the best costume:
I have to say, Tierney, Paajarvi, White, and Chabot have the coolest ones. But I love the effort that everyone goes through, it looks like they had a blast.