Senators News: July 3rd

Scott hooked up with Columbus blogger Matt Wagner to learn more about Marc Methot.  Wagner says “Meth is a good guy in the room and very personable when dealing with the community off the ice. On ice, he’s a great stay at home d-man who knows how to use his body with great on ice vision. I think he’s a bit underrated as a pure defender. He’s not a good offensive player. At times he almost seems afraid to pinch in or join the rush beause he doesn’t want to get caught. His shot is powerful when he does use it, but his accuracy isn’t good. I’d say his penalty killing ability and his mental game [have improved most]. Early on, he took some bad penalties now and then, and he had some major issues with patience (he came to the attention of a lot of fans as a prospect when he went into training camp one year and said he wanted to make the team or get traded before opening day.) He thinks more before he speaks now, and that applies to how he handles his in game responsibilities as well. His injuries were a major factor this year, and most of them were of the 100% bad luck variety. I think it’s possible. I believe he will flourish with a more offensively minded partner, and I can see Meth filling in nicely in the role Kuba had played with Karlsson over the last few seasons.”  This confirms what little I’d seen written about Methot before.

-Scott also included a McKeen’s report from 2010-11 about Guillaume Latendressea smooth, versatile giant with an understated skillset .. good playmaker – boasts a hard, probing shot as well as some slick puckhandling abilities .. nimble for his size and possessing deceiving lateral agility, yet misses an explosive first-step burst as well as elite quickness .. effective when using his superior size and strength to lay out big hits and drive for the net .. still an erratic physical presence who doesn’t always bring the required belligerance or intensity .. oscillates between the extremes sometimes on the same shift .. provided a needed big-body presence in the top six here – created possession down low and making hard plays in the crease .. struggles to sustain his confidence when the goals dry up however.”  I don’t think Latendresse is much of an unknown, given that many fans saw him play for Montreal.  Consistency is going to be the issue with him (that and conditioning).

DarrenM considers the Sens roster set and looks at their hypothetical lineup: Silfverberg-Spezza-Michalek, Latendresse-Turris-Alfredsson, Regin-Smith-Neil, Condra-O’Brien-Greening, Butler; Methot-Karlsson, Cowen-Gonchar, Phillips-Lundin, Borowiecki; Anderson, Bishop.  He thinks the Sens have one of the better bottom six forwards in the league, have improved their defence, and should take less penalties: “For a team that averaged the second-most PIMs per game (14.0), the  Senators shed three regulars who were amongst the team’s worst offenders  in penalties taken per 60 minutes of ice-time (note: Konopka led team with 2.7 penalties per 60. Carkner led the  defencemen with 1.3 penalties per 60 and Foligno was third amongst  forwards with 1.5.)“.  He doesn’t think Ottawa has replaced Kuba‘s offensive contributions, but believes Latendresse and Silfverberg can make up for the loss of Foligno.  “All things considered, Ottawa’s 2012-2013 roster really isn’t all that different from it’s 2011-2012 roster. The young players will be more experienced and a little better, while the losses of Foligno and Kuba appear to be offset by the additions made yesterday and the probable emergence of rookie talent. Ultimately, Ottawa’s roster next season probably puts them in a position to compete again for a playoff spot, but I certainly don’t see them in the mix for home-ice advantage in the postseason. A lot of things went right for Ottawa last season, and many of them are unlikely to be repeated — 78 points for Karlsson, 35 goals for Michalek, and fourth in the league in scoring being three that instantly come to mind. The most intriguing thing about the lineup, really, will be what happens at training camp. As it stands, there appears to be little room for players in Ottawa’s deep prospect pool to find a spot on the team, although you can be sure that Bryan Murray wouldn’t hesitate to make room if any of them turn heads in September.”  I could quibble with the lines, but I agree about the players who will be on the roster on opening night (although Bobby Butler may be gone and replaced by one of the prospects).  I also agree with Darren about the primary loss for the Sens, which is the offensive production from the blueline.  Other than Cowen there’s no real potential for growth among any of the players added to the lineup.

Randy Lee states the obvious, “The more you do here, the less you have to do on July 1. And on July 1 you’ve got to overpay to fill a hole. That’s just the nature of the business. And if we can get our own assets, develop them and make sure they’re good people, sign the right guys, it can put you in a good position.”

Don Brennan, who lost a daily column with Zenon Konopka‘s departure along with two of his favourites (Carkner and Foligno), expresses his anger at the organisation by demonstrating his inability to observe that Tie Domi has attended every Sens development camp for the last few years.  Don also appears to be one of the only people who thought Rick Nash would come to Ottawa.  He writes that the Sens lost a known quantity in Foligno who could be counted on to produce 40 points a season (he’s done it once in four years).  He does include a tiny bit of reporting in the article, “Murray and director of player personnel Pierre Dorion raved about the play of Zibanejad and Hoffman on the final day of development camp.”  It’s easy to pick on Brennan, who isn’t the sharpest knife in the drawer, but like most people I wonder when (if) the clock is going to run out on him.

Aaron Portzline indirectly illustrates the point of Columbus talking to Ottawa about Rick Nash–to jack up the price for his preferred destinations.  Unfortunately for Scott Howson and Blue Jacket fans, that doesn’t work when the player is holding all the cards (just ask Dany Heatley and Edmonton).

-Here’s my look at the Sens success in the draft (2005-07).

-And here’s a look at the last three days of the Sens development camp.

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