Binghamton Senators Roster Expectations

Previously I looked at the roster changes and potential lineup for Binghamton, but with the lockout in effect I wanted to take a look at how that impacted those predictions.  The changes aren’t radical, but it means that until an agreement is reached between the NHL and NHLPA players I expected to be in the NHL (like Jakob Silfverberg and Jared Cowen) will be in Binghamton.  They are like dominos knocking CHL-eligible players like Shane Prince back to junior.

Goaltending is pretty simple: Robin Lehner, Ben Bishop, and Nathan Lawson.  As long as Bishop is here Lawson essentially won’t play.  Bishop has a strong track record in the AHL and Lehner generally does better when pushed, so I expect both of them to be at the top of their game.  I imagine they will roughly split the season between them and I’ll get into win expectations when I do my forthcoming preview for the team’s success in the AHL.

Here’s the blueline: Andre Benoit, Tyler Eckford, Mark Borowiecki and Cowen are the top-four, with Patrick Wiercioch and Eric Gryba rounding things out.  All things being equal, expect Benoit, WierciochCowen and Eckford on the powerplay.  At the moment Fredrik Claesson is the seventh defenseman.

The forward group is much more complicated (particularly given how many wingers can play center), so first I’ll break them down by position (having already excluded CHL-eligible players, even though Pageau will play this weekend due to various injuries):
Centers: Da Costa, Cannone, Grant (LW), HamiltonCaporusso (LW)
Right wing: Silfverberg (LW), Jessiman, Petersson (LW), Stone, Downing (C)
Left wing: Zibanejad (C/RW), Hoffman (C), Dziurzynski (RW), SchneiderKramerCowick

I believe that Caporusso and Downing are automatics for Elmira while CowickHamilton and Schneider are battling it out for the spare forward/Kramer fill-in spot.  My projected top-six: Hoffman, Da Costa, JessimanZibanejad, Silfverberg, and Petersson; filling out the bottom-six are:  Dziurzynski, Grant, StoneCowick, Cannone, and Kramer.  There are many possibilities here, but in general I think that’s the top-six group to start.

Projections (assuming health throughout the season, last year’s ppg’s in brackets):
Silfverberg 76 (SEL 1.10) – expect him to dominate and lead the team in scoring
Da Costa 65 (0.78) – good production when he was out of shape, I expect improvement
Petersson 57 (0.73) – at least a modest gains on production from last year can be expected
Hoffman 57 (0.64) – lead the team in scoring and I think he’ll continue to increase his totals
Zibanejad 57 (SEL 0.50) – elite players who jump from the SEL to the AHL do quite well
Benoit 45 (KHL 0.32) – put up crazy numbers (55) his previous year in the AHL, but this team isn’t as offensively dynamic as the Calder Cup squad so I’m expecting more typical production from him
Jessiman 45 (0.65) – he’s coming off a career year and I expect his numbers to dip a little
Stone 38 (WHL 1.86) – big numbers in the CHL don’t necessarily translate at the AHL level so it’s hard to know if he’ll dominate or take his time adapting
Cannone 30 (0.56) – pressed into top minutes on a bad team, he’ll settle back into a supporting role and see his production drop because of it
Grant 30 (0.38) – a rough rookie season, but he should be better this year; he’s buried in the lineup so his production won’t improve much
Cowen 30 (NHL 0.20) – should dominate in the AHL
Wiercioch 30 (0.35) – there should be a step forward offensively from him this year
Dziurzynski 25 (0.38) – given his role on the team there’s no real room for increased production
Eckford 25 (0.33) – I expect him to match his totals from last year
Borowiecki 20 (0.30) – a year older and better, but he’s not on the team to produce points
Cowick 15 (0.20) – to play regularly he needs to be a fourth-line, energy forward, so there aren’t many points available
Gryba 15 (0.27) – he’s not on the team to produce points
Kramer 10 (WHL 0.56) – optimistic totals for a scrapper; he may be an occasional presence in the lineup depending on the opposition
PPG’s for those not projected: Jack Downing (0.36), Wacey Hamilton (0.14), Louie Caporusso (ECHL 1.10), Cole Schneider (NCAA 1.18), Shane Prince (OHL 1.57), Jean-Gabriel Pageau (QMJHL 1.41), Chris Wideman (NCAA 0.58), Ben Blood (NCAA 0.50), Fredrik Claesson (SEL 0.14).

A final note on Elmira (ECHL), the Jackals have four defensemen and six forwards signed along with goaltender Marc Cheverie.  Nearly all the forwards are listed as wingers.  This is how their roster looks at the moment (players in red are ones I believe will be knocked out of the lineup when Binghamton sends more players down):

Forwards
Centers: Jordan Pietrus (W) (65-40)
Rightwing: Artem Demkov (67-57), Jean Bourbeau (49-26), Chaz Johnson (64-35), Rob Bellamy (ECHL 63-24), Kevin McCarey (NCAA 37-12), Brandon Blandina (NCAA 39-9)
Leftwing: Dustin Gazley (RW) (72-85), Andrew Rowe (AHL 34-11), Brad Peltz (NCAA 9-1), Corey Bellamy (FHL 32-14), Alec Kirschner (ECHL 30-2)
Defense: Kyle Bushee (57-19), Matt Campanale (66-23), Jimmy Martin (70-27), Jordon Southorn (50-21), Ben Blood (NCAA 42-21), Chris Wideman (NCAA 41-24), Danny New (NCAA 36-14)
Goaltenders: Marc Cheverie (2.71), Nick Niedert (2.07)

ECHL projections are exceedingly difficult given all the roster movement, so I’m not going to try it here.  Sens prospects will receive significant ice time and I expect them to enjoy a lot of success at this level.  If my roster expectations for Binghamton are correct then Caporusso (C), Downing (RW/C), and possibly Hamilton (C), Schneider (LW) and Claesson (D) will spend significant time here (assuming a lengthy lockout).

This article is written by Peter Levi (@eyeonthesens)

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2 Comments

  1. […] Binghamton Senators Roster Expectations […]

  2. […] time for me to eat some crow over my expectation that Shane Prince and Jean Gabriel-Pageau would be sent back to the CHL .  Given the number of forwards slated for Binghamton I thought both might be better served back […]


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