Ottawa 4, Buffalo 1

The Senators won a dull game tonight, with the dullness receiving a healthy assist from TSN’s Mike Johnson (who is about as entertaining as a wet paper bag).  It was an off night for the officials (Brian Pochmara and Chris Rooney), but the calls did not ultimately decide the game.  The disjointed play on Ottawa’s part wasn’t a big surprise given that all their lines were juggled because of the insertion of Turris, Kuba, and GoncharJesse Winchester was hurt on a hit from behind by Paul Gaustad early in the first period.  For the box score go here link.  A look at the goals:
1. Smith (Neil, Carkner)
A great pass by Carkner springs Neil on a breakaway and Smith cashes in the rebound
2. Buffalo, Leopold (pp)
Soft five-hole goal on Anderson
3. Condra (Turris)
Bangs in Turris’ rebound after creating the turnover that started the play
4. Karlsson (Alfredsson, Spezza) (pp)
Fantastic pass from Alfredsson gives Karlsson an empty net
5. Condra (Karlsson) (en)

Top-performers: no one player was dominant to my mind, but the Regin-Smith-Neil line was strong and Condra had a good night.

Players who struggled: there were no clear duds tonight either, despite Anderson letting in a soft goal and Gonchar and Karlsson leading the team in turnovers.


Senators News: December 20th

-Here are the projected lines courtesy of The Ottawa Sun: Colin Greening-Jason Spezza-Daniel Alfredsson, Nick Foligno-Kyle Turris-Erik Condra, Zack Smith-Peter Regin-Chris Neil, Jesse Winchester-Zenon Konopka-Kaspars Daugavins; Jared Cowen-Erik Karlsson, Filip Kuba-Sergei Gonchar, Chris Phillips-Matt Carkner.  As expected, Brian Lee and Bobby Butler are the scratches.

The Ottawa Sun‘s Bruce Garrioch has a piece on Kyle Turris‘ excitement coming to Ottawa (link), which includes an interesting sentiment from Paul MacLean, “He solidifies the second-line centre position that we’ve been searching for.  Not only for this season, but seasons to come. He’s a piece that makes us better today and for down the road as well.”  Two things to take from this: 1) MacLean has no doubt whatsoever that Turris is ready to be a second-line center, 2) none of the other players who have auditioned for the role (Peter Regin, Nick Foligno, and Stephane Da Costa) are capable of handling the position.  I happen to agree, but it makes me wonder about Regin‘s future–he can play the wing, but he’s a better center (particularly with his wonky shoulder).

-In the same article Garrioch reminds us that Spezza knows Turris from the 2008 World Championships.  Turris is also friends with Sens prospect Patrick Wiercioch (they played together for the Burnaby Express in the BCHL in 2006-07).

-THN, ESPN, and TSN’s power rankings are out (link, link, and link) with Ottawa 20th, 20th, and 23rd.

-Binghamton practice lines: Dziurzynski-Cannone-Bartlett, Hoffman-Da Costa-Parrish, Klinkhammer-Locke-Cowick, Svendsen-Hamilton-Lessard; Borowiecki-Gryba, Raymond-Conboy, Ratchuk-Schira.  Joy Lindsay Tweets (link) that “Kleinendorst thinks Godfrey should be back in the lineup after the break [December 26th].”

-As expected, Nikita Filatov has signed with CSKA in the KHL (link)

-Prospect updates (their position in team scoring is noted in brackets, defence compared to defence; I’ve also indicated if the player’s scoring position has change (with a + for up, – for down, and = for unchanged):
Mark Stone (RW, Brandon, WHL) 33-27-38-65 (1st=) (WJC)
Shane Prince (C/LW, Ottawa 67s, OHL) 25-14-22-36 (3rd=) (WJC)
Jean-Gabriel Pageau (RW, Gatineau, QMJHL) 19-19-14-33 (4th-)
Matt Puempel (LW, Peterborough, OHL) 29-17-15-32 (2nd-) (suspended)
Stefan Noesen (C/RW, Plymouth, OHL) 29-11-21-32 (t-3rd-)
Jakub Culek (C/LW, Rimouski, QMJHL) 32-8-15-23 (5th=)
Darren Kramer (C/LW, Spokane, WHL) 30-12-8-20 (6th=)
Jordan Fransoo (D, Brandon, WHL) 36-2-6-8 (4th=)
Jakob Silfverberg (C/RW, Brynas) 27-12-12-24 (2nd=) (injured)
Mika Zibanejad (C/RW, Djurgarden) 13-3-3-6 (14th=) (WJC)
Fredrik Claesson (D, Djurgarden) 29-1-4-5 (4th=) (WJC)
Marcus Sorensen (RW, Boras) 15-6-4-10 (6th=)
Ryan Dzingel (C, CCHA-Ohio State) 17-5-10-15 (3rd=)
Michael Sdao (D, ECAC-Princeton) 14-5-4-9 (1st+)
Ben Blood (D, WCHA-North Dakota) 18-2-7-9 (t-1st=)
Bryce Aneloski (D, WCHA-Nebraska-Omaha) 20-1-8-9 (3rd=)
Chris Wideman (D, CCHA-Miami) 20-1-8-9 (1st=)
Jeff Costello (LW, CCHA-Notre Dame) 15-1-6-7 (9th=)
Max McCormick (LW, CCHA-Ohio State) 10-2-4-6 (12th=)
Brad Peltz (LW, ECAC-Yale) 3-0-0-0 (=)