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Forums :: Ottawa Senators :: DO The Senators measure up well within their Division?
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Doppleganger
Ottawa Senators
Location: Reality
Joined: 08.25.2006

Sep 11 @ 2:00 PM ET
With the Senator Roookies set to face off in mere moments, at the Rookie tournament in London.........I thought it was time to see where people (sens fans) think their team, sits within the North East Division.

Teams that I think are weaker than last season; the Canadiens dealt away their best player in the playoffs last season and are going with a yet to proven back up as their starter. Price started 41 games last season and only turned in 13 wins. This, to me means the Canadiens will still be in and around the 7th or 8th seed come the end of the regular season.

Teams that I think are stronger than last season; The Bruins with former leaf Rask being the starter from day one, and with former leaf first rounder Seguin and recently acquired Horton, I see the Bruins being a better team all around. The leafs had no where to go but up, so they should be a better team as well.

Teams that I feel are in the same place as last season; the Sabres and the Senators. The Sabres finished first in the Division and I see that happening again, as Ryan Miller is probably the best goaltender in the Division and perhaps the NHL. The Senators brought in Gonchar, lost Volchenkov so six eggs for a half a dozen. A full season from Kuba and Karlsson should make the defense better over all when compared to last season. A couple of key players in "contract years" should push them to be better than last season.

Which teams finish in the playoff?? The Bruins, Sabres and the Senators. Which teams are bubble teams?? The Canadiens, they've nabbed the eighth seed in the conference in the last week in the last two seasons and they should be there again. Which team does not make the playoffs?? The leafs.
Sens2k5
Joined: 09.16.2005

Sep 15 @ 12:44 PM ET
Overall I would agree with your assessments...except for when it comes to the Sens. No doubt we lost a good Defensive D-man over the summer, but we signed a top end Offensive D-man who without a shadow of a doubt will improve the worst area of the Sens game the last season or so (not counting goaltending).....the Powerplay.

I love A-train, but he definitely had deficiencies in his defensive game. In particular foot speed. Yes, he was and is a great shot blocker......if the play is being setup in the Dzone, but let's not kid ourselves...it wasn't uncommon to see a winger get a step on him and turn him around if not inside out in one on one situations. Sure he would lay them out from time to time but he wasn't exactly burning up the ice or able to recover all that well. Again, I'm not saying he's a terrible Dman now that he's gone.....I'm saying he is a solid Dman, and a great Dman once setup in his Defensive zone.

Addressing the Sens powerplay was absolutely crucial going forward because frankly in the Offensive zone, NO ONE was scared of our D or a shot from the point and now they will have to be. It will have a 2 fold effect....A) the Sens D corps production will increase and B) because of the threat on the Blueline it will provide more opportunities for the forwards to find open ice and score. If you can't score on the powerplay, you can't win games and you certainly can't win the Cup.

Did we take a hit "defensively" sure without a doubt, but I think the rationale behind the move was "yeah we won't block as many shots, but we won't have to because we won't be playing in our own zone as much"...besides I think guys like Smith and Carkner are really going to step up their game to help support the defensive efforts in the Sens D-zone.

So while I wouldn't call it a wash I would say we traded a half dozen eggs in exchange for 8 or 9 eggs.

Improved powerplay means an improved number in the WINS column. I do not believe there will be a large increase of losses due to the departure of A-train.
Doppleganger
Ottawa Senators
Location: Reality
Joined: 08.25.2006

Sep 24 @ 12:17 PM ET
Overall I would agree with your assessments...except for when it comes to the Sens. No doubt we lost a good Defensive D-man over the summer, but we signed a top end Offensive D-man who without a shadow of a doubt will improve the worst area of the Sens game the last season or so (not counting goaltending).....the Powerplay.

I love A-train, but he definitely had deficiencies in his defensive game. In particular foot speed. Yes, he was and is a great shot blocker......if the play is being setup in the Dzone, but let's not kid ourselves...it wasn't uncommon to see a winger get a step on him and turn him around if not inside out in one on one situations. Sure he would lay them out from time to time but he wasn't exactly burning up the ice or able to recover all that well. Again, I'm not saying he's a terrible Dman now that he's gone.....I'm saying he is a solid Dman, and a great Dman once setup in his Defensive zone.

Addressing the Sens powerplay was absolutely crucial going forward because frankly in the Offensive zone, NO ONE was scared of our D or a shot from the point and now they will have to be. It will have a 2 fold effect....A) the Sens D corps production will increase and B) because of the threat on the Blueline it will provide more opportunities for the forwards to find open ice and score. If you can't score on the powerplay, you can't win games and you certainly can't win the Cup.

Did we take a hit "defensively" sure without a doubt, but I think the rationale behind the move was "yeah we won't block as many shots, but we won't have to because we won't be playing in our own zone as much"...besides I think guys like Smith and Carkner are really going to step up their game to help support the defensive efforts in the Sens D-zone.

So while I wouldn't call it a wash I would say we traded a half dozen eggs in exchange for 8 or 9 eggs.

Improved powerplay means an improved number in the WINS column. I do not believe there will be a large increase of losses due to the departure of A-train.

- Sens2k5

You make a great point.
Here in Ottawa all we heard from the local media was how great Volchenkov was at blocking shots, as well as his open ice hits.......as these were his two biggest attributes and the local media tends to oversell the local player's attributes.

Who in Ottawa honestly heard about Sutton's reputation at blocking shots and hitting the opposition, prior to his short stint here in Ottawa?? He was as good if not better than Volchenkov in these area's. While it is now not one of the ingredients on the Senator's blue-line, as I pointed out, a healthy Kuba and a full season of Karlsson and the addition of Gonchar should be an improvement over the defensive corps from last year..............and the point you make about the PP is also true, I believe the Ottawa PP was ranked 27th last season, so it has to be better with the addition of Gonchar.

So yes 8 or 9 eggs makes a bit more sense.
daeth
Philadelphia Flyers
Location: accuratently, ON
Joined: 09.15.2005

Sep 26 @ 2:29 AM ET
Buffalo and Boston are likely the only two teams who could finish ahead of Ottawa in the division. I think the Leafs and Habs will miss the playoffs, but the rest will probably make it in.
nightmare3020
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Windsor Area, ON
Joined: 08.23.2006

Sep 28 @ 10:24 AM ET
Buffalo and Boston are likely the only two teams who could finish ahead of Ottawa in the division. I think the Leafs and Habs will miss the playoffs, but the rest will probably make it in.
- daeth


how i look at it is boston is a clear cut #1 IMO then its kinda whos questionmarks get answered

buffalo has an elite goaltender, but can myers continue his pace, can the forwards step it up, and so on

Montreal is the price right?

toronto.... sure kessel can score but who else, and is this the year their highpaid defense actually plays like one. Goaltending should be good night in and out but dont expect miller numbers.

Ottawa thin offensive core but spezza can be a game breaker... but will he. Also you never know with the goaltending. If leclaire can regain form i think they will have a solid year

so i would say

boston
sabres
montreal
leafs / sens
leafs / sens


alot of question marks in this division.
Doppleganger
Ottawa Senators
Location: Reality
Joined: 08.25.2006

Sep 28 @ 1:03 PM ET
how i look at it is boston is a clear cut #1 IMO then its kinda whos questionmarks get answered

buffalo has an elite goaltender, but can myers continue his pace, can the forwards step it up, and so on

Montreal is the price right?

toronto.... sure kessel can score but who else, and is this the year their highpaid defense actually plays like one. Goaltending should be good night in and out but dont expect miller numbers.

Ottawa thin offensive core but spezza can be a game breaker... but will he. Also you never know with the goaltending. If leclaire can regain form i think they will have a solid year

so i would say

boston
sabres
montreal
leafs / sens
leafs / sens


alot of question marks in this division.

- nightmare3020



Ottawa is deep at goal tending, more so than at anytime in recent memory. If either of the two at the NHL level cannot grab and run with the "starter" moniker, then I believe there will be no hesitation in bringing up a goaltender from Binghamton to shake up the the other two. The competition (within the organization)should be enough to improve the goal tending from last year. And keep in mind, both Leclaire and Elliot are in "contract years".

I'll stick by my original prediction of Buffalo, Boston and Ottawa as playoff teams (not in that order) Montreal struggling to keep their hold on the eighth playoff seed in the Eastern Conference, and the leafs improving, but not enough to be in the playoff picture. Oh and Kadri plays most of the season in the AHL.
nightmare3020
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Windsor Area, ON
Joined: 08.23.2006

Sep 28 @ 1:10 PM ET
even if the sens had 100 average goaltenders its not better then a team with an elite goaltender


i think leclaire has the possibility to be solid.... but as of today its a questionmark. It will be answered this year i just dont know what that answer will be

Doppleganger
Ottawa Senators
Location: Reality
Joined: 08.25.2006

Sep 28 @ 1:20 PM ET
even if the sens had 100 average goaltenders its not better then a team with an elite goaltender


i think leclaire has the possibility to be solid.... but as of today its a questionmark. It will be answered this year i just dont know what that answer will be

- nightmare3020


Within the division, there is only one proven "elite" goaltender, perhaps two if we count Thomas, but he's not going to be playing the bulk of the games in Boston and therefore perhaps another will emerge in Boston this season.

After that I don't see any of the remaining teams in the division having a leg up over the others in terms of goal tending...........But if I were to give an edge to one team, it would be Ottawa for the reasons I stated earlier in this thread.
Paul99
Ottawa Senators
Location: Ottawa, ON
Joined: 06.29.2006

Sep 28 @ 1:47 PM ET
how i look at it is boston is a clear cut #1 IMO then its kinda whos questionmarks get answered

buffalo has an elite goaltender, but can myers continue his pace, can the forwards step it up, and so on

Montreal is the price right?

toronto.... sure kessel can score but who else, and is this the year their highpaid defense actually plays like one. Goaltending should be good night in and out but dont expect miller numbers.

Ottawa thin offensive core but spezza can be a game breaker... but will he. Also you never know with the goaltending. If leclaire can regain form i think they will have a solid year

so i would say

boston
sabres
montreal
leafs / sens
leafs / sens


alot of question marks in this division.

- nightmare3020


i disagree that boston is a clear #1. they may lose savard all year and last year without him they barely made the playoffs.
Doppleganger
Ottawa Senators
Location: Reality
Joined: 08.25.2006

Sep 28 @ 4:39 PM ET
i disagree that boston is a clear #1. they may lose savard all year and last year without him they barely made the playoffs.
- Paul99


But they have added Nathan Horten and perhaps Tyler Seguin..............and they'll start the season with Rask as their starter. They'll defiantly be in the mix for the division lead.
PrinceLH
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Belleville, ON
Joined: 07.06.2007

Sep 30 @ 12:10 AM ET
Not sold on any of these teams being an undisputed number one.

Boston: Still offensively challenged. Rask was good, last year, but so was Raycroft, when he was a Calder winner. Their defense is solid, but not flashy. They should win the division, but it's not that clear cut.

Buffalo: It's how Ryan Miller plays. If he's off, the Sabres rarely win. If he was to ever get injured, or worn down, later in the season, Buffalo could conceivably miss the playoffs. Their cheap attitude to free agency and trade deadline deals, cement them in as a team that will not get past the first round.

Ottawa: They have depth, but only so much. They may be one of the best balanced teams in the division, but they'll only go as far as their average goaltending will let them. Any major injury to one of their top 6, would cripple any chance of this team advancing into the playoffs or beyond the first round.

Toronto: Very young, very inexperienced. They are showing signs of rounding into a good, hardnosed unit, playing a Western Conference style of game. If healthy, they could nab one of the last playoff spots. For that to happen, their defence must step up to their potential and their top line, must produce like a top line.

Montreal: From Cinderella to a pumpkin. The clock struck midnight, when Halak left town. This team is not tough and their goaltending is the worst in the division. Their playoff run was a one hit wonder and they should be destined for last place in the division. They will, however, be better than the Islanders, in the Conference.
Asquaredx2
Ottawa Senators
Location: Oh no I wasn't so stfu and I'm
Joined: 02.18.2007

Sep 30 @ 11:43 PM ET
Ottawa thin offensive core
- nightmare3020


Really?

Spezza, Alfredsson, Michalek, Kovalev and Fisher is their top-5. Both Regin and Foligno have the potential to break out offensively this season. Ruutu, Kelly and Neil combined for 37 goals and 80 points last season which is pretty solid production for the fourth line, and Bobby Butler's got decent potential as a call-up guy for next season.

Plus now they have Gonchar, Karlsson, Kuba and Campoli on the blue-line to get the puck to the forwards, convert cycling into scoring opportunities, and run the powerplay.

The Sens definitely have some problems but I wouldn't call the offensive core "thin." There's probably as much talent on this version of the Sens as on any Sens team post-2005-2006.
nightmare3020
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Windsor Area, ON
Joined: 08.23.2006

Oct 1 @ 9:16 AM ET
Really?

Spezza, Alfredsson, Michalek, Kovalev and Fisher is their top-5.

- Asquaredx2

spezza legit #1
Alfredson if he can defy age again is legit #1

Michalek is a good top 6 but i wouldnt say top end talent

kovalev is washed up IMO

Fisher is an elite 3rd liner IMO. He can play 2nd but i dont know if he is. I mean great pk, great shutdown, heard he is a great leader (basically how the pens have used staal).... but I dunno top 6 he just doesnt have the offensive side to help run the 2nd powerplay unit. But hes an asset to the team no doubt.

Without having an elite goaltender, or elite defence (while they could surprise).... i just dont think the offensive core is strong enough to pull them to great heights


IM not saying Ottawa's offense is crap because its not, i just dont think they have 6 legit top 6 forwards, which can be viewed as thin when compared to the detroit, chicago, washingtons..
Doppleganger
Ottawa Senators
Location: Reality
Joined: 08.25.2006

Oct 1 @ 10:54 AM ET


IM not saying Ottawa's offense is crap because its not, i just dont think they have 6 legit top 6 forwards, which can be viewed as thin when compared to the detroit, chicago, washingtons..

- nightmare3020



This thread was intended to compare the teams in the North East Division. Detroit, Chicago and Washington are obviously in other Divisions. Any team in any division plays the majority of their games within their own division first, their conference second............so games vs division opponents carry more weight (4 point games) when striving for a playoff seed.

The Senators top six forwards measure up well against the top six of any other team within the division.
nightmare3020
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Windsor Area, ON
Joined: 08.23.2006

Oct 1 @ 11:08 AM ET
so if i made a thread of how great is phil kessel compared to the other leaf players no one is allowed to bring up other players from other teams?
Guess what the sens play other teams, i know its a mind blasting discovery for you but it happens


boston is better, because of goaltending, and forward depth

Montreal is arguably better depending each teams goaltending

buffalo is another team with a thin offensive core but with miller back there anything is possible

I for one am not sold on the leafs, i think we can battle for 8th but there is so many question marks even that isnt a guarantee.

i for one think if the sens get in , it will be in that 7/8th seed with 1-2 of this division beating them. There i played within your lame rules.
Doppleganger
Ottawa Senators
Location: Reality
Joined: 08.25.2006

Oct 1 @ 5:08 PM ET
so if i made a thread of how great is phil kessel compared to the other leaf players no one is allowed to bring up other players from other teams?
Guess what the sens play other teams, i know its a mind blasting discovery for you but it happens


boston is better, because of goaltending, and forward depth

Montreal is arguably better depending each teams goaltending

buffalo is another team with a thin offensive core but with miller back there anything is possible

I for one am not sold on the leafs, i think we can battle for 8th but there is so many question marks even that isnt a guarantee.

i for one think if the sens get in , it will be in that 7/8th seed with 1-2 of this division beating them. There i played within your lame rules.

- nightmare3020



So Montreal who barely grabbed the Eighth Seed, with five less wins than Ottawa who finished in the fifth seed is "arguably better", without Halak?? Please explain your logic.
nightmare3020
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Windsor Area, ON
Joined: 08.23.2006

Oct 1 @ 5:44 PM ET
you're really gonna make me talk good about Montreal? I think im about to die a bit inside
Markov was injured for about half the year last year, hes their power play quarterback. He wont miss as many games appparently.
Subban only played 16 games(2 regular season) but was outstanding in all of them, he will have a full year this year
their defense has a nice depth to it

gomez, cammy, gionta, plekanec, while they wouldnt be my choice for top 6, are top 6. None elite but together they seem to play well together. They have some depth but will need someone to step up to help make this team go from good to great

with all that said Montreals season will be as good or bad as price is.
Mr_Squeaks
Ottawa Senators
Location: Location: Location: Glitch in
Joined: 06.26.2006

Oct 1 @ 5:53 PM ET
you're really gonna make me talk good about Montreal? I think im about to die a bit inside
Markov was injured for about half the year last year, hes their power play quarterback. He wont miss as many games appparently.
Subban only played 16 games(2 regular season) but was outstanding in all of them, he will have a full year this year
their defense has a nice depth to it

gomez, cammy, gionta, plekanec, while they wouldnt be my choice for top 6, are top 6. None elite but together they seem to play well together. They have some depth but will need someone to step up to help make this team go from good to great

with all that said Montreals season will be as good or bad as price is.

- nightmare3020


Oh, dude... your soul needed you to be strong on this one...
JordanLee5
Ottawa Senators
Location: Blainville, QC
Joined: 08.10.2009

Oct 1 @ 5:57 PM ET
you're really gonna make me talk good about Montreal? I think im about to die a bit inside
Markov was injured for about half the year last year, hes their power play quarterback. He wont miss as many games appparently.
Subban only played 16 games(2 regular season) but was outstanding in all of them, he will have a full year this year
their defense has a nice depth to it

gomez, cammy, gionta, plekanec, while they wouldnt be my choice for top 6, are top 6. None elite but together they seem to play well together. They have some depth but will need someone to step up to help make this team go from good to great

with all that said Montreals season will be as good or bad as price is.

- nightmare3020

Alfie missed 12 games, Spezza 22 games, Michalek 16 games, Foligno 21 games, Kuba 29 games, and Volchenkov 18 games last season alone. Thats 71 games missed by some of our top 6 guys and 47 games from 2 of our top 4 defensemen last year. Dont start with the Injury bug excuse because we had it bad aswell. Plus I could start saying well we added Gonchar, and Karlsson will have a full year in the NHL so our PP will be better. Kovalev and Leclaire can't possible be worst then last year can they? We won't have as many injuries etc... The point is your arguments on how montreal is better is weak, on paper I say the Sens have a better all around team and better depth down the line up.
PrinceLH
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Belleville, ON
Joined: 07.06.2007

Oct 2 @ 12:48 AM ET
Alfie missed 12 games, Spezza 22 games, Michalek 16 games, Foligno 21 games, Kuba 29 games, and Volchenkov 18 games last season alone. Thats 71 games missed by some of our top 6 guys and 47 games from 2 of our top 4 defensemen last year. Dont start with the Injury bug excuse because we had it bad aswell. Plus I could start saying well we added Gonchar, and Karlsson will have a full year in the NHL so our PP will be better. Kovalev and Leclaire can't possible be worst then last year can they? We won't have as many injuries etc... The point is your arguments on how montreal is better is weak, on paper I say the Sens have a better all around team and better depth down the line up.
- JordanLee5

I tend to agree. The Sens are a better all around team than the Habs. The Habs rode a hot goalie, playing for a contract, to the conference finals. It won' happen again. It was a one hit wonder and they'll settle behind the Leafs, in the division this year. The Sens will finish second or third in the Conference. It all depends if Ryan Miller can have a season as good or better than last year. If the Sabres continue to ride him, then he may tire down the stretch and the Sabres could tumble as low as 4th.
nightmare3020
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Windsor Area, ON
Joined: 08.23.2006

Oct 2 @ 10:05 AM ET
so what you are saying are the sens are injury prone and we can expect alot of games missed and that to be your excuse this year?

im not gonna defend the habs, im not a fan, but looking at their roster only 2 guys played all 82 games


every team gets injuries, just seems the habs have more dpeth that can step in incase of injuries where the sens i just dont think they do


Doppleganger
Ottawa Senators
Location: Reality
Joined: 08.25.2006

Oct 2 @ 12:49 PM ET
I tend to agree. The Sens are a better all around team than the Habs. The Habs rode a hot goalie, playing for a contract, to the conference finals. It won' happen again. It was a one hit wonder and they'll settle behind the Leafs, in the division this year. The Sens will finish second or third in the Conference. It all depends if Ryan Miller can have a season as good or better than last year. If the Sabres continue to ride him, then he may tire down the stretch and the Sabres could tumble as low as 4th.
- PrinceLH



In order for the Sens to finish "second or third in the Conference" as you predict...............that'll mean they have to win their Division.............which I cannot agree on. Two teams have far superior goal tending and one of those will win the division IMHO.
PrinceLH
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Belleville, ON
Joined: 07.06.2007

Oct 3 @ 1:10 AM ET
In order for the Sens to finish "second or third in the Conference" as you predict...............that'll mean they have to win their Division.............which I cannot agree on. Two teams have far superior goal tending and one of those will win the division IMHO.
- Doppleganger

Meant to say division, but the earlier statement could also happen. Boston isn't a shoe in for top spot. There is no dominant team in the northeast. The Northeast seems to be the goaltending division of hockey. Many of the great goalies play there.
JordanLee5
Ottawa Senators
Location: Blainville, QC
Joined: 08.10.2009

Oct 3 @ 7:23 AM ET
Meant to say division, but the earlier statement could also happen. Boston isn't a shoe in for top spot. There is no dominant team in the northeast. The Northeast seems to be the goaltending division of hockey. Many of the great goalies play there.
- PrinceLH

After Miller there aren't many great goalies in the Northeast, just a lot of possible good goalies who are unproven or that have to build on past success.
nightmare3020
Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: Windsor Area, ON
Joined: 08.23.2006

Oct 3 @ 9:49 AM ET
After Miller there aren't many great goalies in the Northeast, just a lot of possible good goalies who are unproven or that have to build on past success.
- JordanLee5

rask had some impressive numbers last year, and thomas has shown he can step up his game if need be

i still say boston has depth at every position.... their d could use another offensive guy thats about it
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