Senators News: May 11th

Chapin Landvogt interviewed Jakob Silfverberg, who among other things said, “No, I did not [expect to be a top goal-scorer]. Before the season, I said to myself that I was going to get bigger and be a better player than the season before that, but I could never imagine it having gone as well as it did.” And “I hope I’ll be there [make the NHL team], but it’s the toughest league in the world and it’s going to be a tough camp. I hope I’ll end up there, but we’ll just have to see what happens.”

-The Sens signed Fredrik Claesson yesterday to a three-year, entry level contract.  Tim Murray said, “He wasn’t on a very good team in Djurgarden … but I think it helped his game. It allowed him to play a lot of minutes in a lot of different situations. He played regular against the men and that’s a pretty good league. By him being on that team and not getting buried, it probably sped up his development and gave him the confidence to make this big move, come over here and start (next) year in Binghamton and get on with his pro life. He played a defensive role (at the world juniors). He moves the puck smartly. He has to work on his skating, quickness and mobility a bit, but he’s really taken great strides for us. He made the decision that he wanted to come over here and start his pro career, so we’re very happy about that.

Stefan Noesen talked about his future with the Sens, “Just watching (rookie) Colin Greening, seeing how he developed over the course of the year, that basically gives me chills. That could be me in a year or two. It’s really inspiring to watch. It gives me a lot of hope. I need to get stronger as a whole. My leg strength, my upper body strength, my core, everything. And also my speed. But speed comes as you play. It won’t come just like that. You’ve got to work at it and take it in and absorb it, at that level. No one can just make a jump like that and be as quick as they normally are. You’ve got to get used the speed, you have to get used to everything. Just practising with those (NHL) guys makes you faster, because you have to try and keep up with them. As you keep practising and practising with them, you start to play at a fast pace like that all the time. Every year you come in hoping and praying you can make the team. Yeah I hope I make the team; I really don’t want to go back to Plymouth. But at the same time, if I do, that just means they want me to develop more, work on becoming a whole player. I really do feel like I could make the step next year, but it all depends on the summer I have. If I dedicate myself this summer, work out five or six days a week and get stronger every day, then I really do think I have a good chance of making it. I kinda feel like I play sorta like Brendan Morrow does. But that’s just me. I felt my game as a whole got a lot more calm. I just settled down a lot more. I had more patience. I was able to create plays that last year, I really didn’t have a chance to do. It all just unveiled right in front of me. When they called up (Jakob) Silfverberg for the next couple of games, that’s really inspiring. It makes me believe that next year is going to be a good year for me. It’s basically pushing me to develop this summer and do the things that they’re wanting me to do, to be able to step in and play at that next level next year.”

-Sens prospect Jakub Culek and Rimouski lost the QMJHL final, ending his CHL career.

Greg Wyshynski addresses fears that the result of this year’s playoffs is a sign that the league is returning to the Dead Puck Era.  He describes “old time hockey” as “battles for the puck, battling through checks, earning every inch of ice and every goal scored, the current incarnation of the NHL is for you.”  That description of “old time hockey” applies to every style and era (even the trap-happy teams battled), so it’s a meaningless definition.  Wyshynski ends with “Are there changes to be made? Sure. How’s this one: Blocking a shot that goes out of play is a delay of game. If we’re going to keep that other silly delay rule on the books, then expand it to help cut down on blocks.”  Whether that proposed rule would pass or help I don’t know, but points to the problem that this kind of hockey isn’t entertaining.

-As many bemoan the quality of this year’s playoffs, Stu Hackel comes to the defense of shot-blocking which he feels is being assailed.  He throws in the usual chestnuts, “The playoffs have always been about defense” (just ignore the high-flying Pittsburgh Penguins of the 90s, Edmonton Oilers of the 80s, Canadiens of the 70s, etc) and “anyone who equates today’s game with the boredom engendered by the neutral zone trap needs to have their pulse checked. True, there is a certain predictability and sameness to the way some teams play, damming the slot, keeping shooters to the outside and forcing the attacking team to pass the puck around, endlessly it seems at times, until they can find a shooting lane.”  I don’t think the game has to be identical to the trap-era to be boring, nor does Hackel really present what’s exciting about the current style of play.  Hockey already features a player (the goalie) whose job it is to stop pucks–having five other goalies in front of him diminishes his role and makes the game more about luck than skill.

Adam Proteau talks about the possibility of a Phoenix-New Jersey final, “Or as forcefully sedated NBC executives are calling it, “as many as seven roundhouse kicks to the groin with a knife-tipped boot’” and “Two teams – partially or almost completely financially supported by the league – that can’t fill their own buildings playing a style of hockey no kid grows up emulating in front of almost nobody on TV. And there is no impetus to change it, leading to the prospect of games that have only three or four goals scored.”

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  1. […] Senators News: May 11th […]


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