Senators News (March 17th)

Ottawa Senators Official NHL Headshots

As Andrew Hammond‘s improbable run continues, it reminds me of Jim Carey‘s with Washington eons ago: a middling NCAA goaltender takes the NHL by storm for a brief time before fading away.  Carey won a Vezina and was a first-team all-star in his first full season (95-96), but proceeded to bomb out afterwards, retiring from the AHL just three years later.  Hammond may be better than that, or he may not be, but when I hear speculation of moving Robin Lehner (who is younger than Hammond–he’s 23, the Hamburglar is 27), I have to shake my head.  Bryan Murray is very much a “what have you done for me lately” manager when it comes to players who aren’t over-the-hill veterans, so there’s a chance we might see a very foolish trade when the season ends.


The all-powerful and all-knowing Nichols reports the Sens and Leafs talked about swapping Zibanejad for Kadri in the summer, but the Sens balked at Toronto’s request for additional assets to be included.  I’m not sure how fans would have reacted at the time, but I’m happy Murray didn’t pull the trigger.

Richard McCrae looks at the odds of Ottawa catching Washington (now that Boston seems out of reach) and concludes even that will be difficult.  A more interesting question is whether it would be good for the organisation to make the playoffs–what message would that send to management?  Does Murray realise a large part of the recent success is because useless players like Chris Neil and Chris Phillips aren’t on the ice?  I have my doubts, although it could be argued nothing will cure Murray of his obsession with aging vets, in which case results are actually meaningless–I prefer not to be so pessimistic.

I only occasionally dip my toe into SenShot for anything other than AHL information, which is why I rarely cite them here.  As for why, I’ll use editor Jack Leiper recent post to illustrate it: he writes about Mika Zibanejad‘s season and how it seems to have turned after a rough start…and his analysis doesn’t go much beyond that he’s been more consistent.  Here’s what Nichols (link above) offers as an aside on the same subject:

Fortunately for the Senators, Zibanejad has come into his own after a sluggish start that has mostly been attributed to a reduced role and shitty linemates to start the season

However flippant the remark is, there’s specific, quantifiable analysis (quality of linemates and use on ice).  I get enough vagueness from official Sens outlets, so when I come to the blogosphere I want analysis.

Ottawa Senators Official NHL Headshots

Before I get to my prospect update below, a quick look at those from the ECHL contingent.  Troy Rutkowski has been playing in Binghamton since March, but prior to his recall stood at 54-6-18-24, leading the awful Evansville defensecorps in scoring.  His points-per-game (0.44) are a marked increase over his rookie season in Elmira (0.21), and however middling those numbers are, it still shows some improvement.  His production had started to rebound after a long stretch of inconsistency (December into February, 31-2-7-9), perhaps worn down from the massive number of games played over such a short period.  Chris Driedger was (until his recall today due to Craig Anderson‘s health) the last man standing in Evansville.  His numbers have been awful (8-27-2 3.78 .885), albeit the roster in front of him is even worse (Evansville is 14-39-8, last in the ECHL).  Driedger hasn’t won a game since January and has been woefully inconsistent, but getting his head beat in game after game can’t help his confidence any and as a younger goaltender (20) it’s far too soon to say he’s done.  That being said, I’d rather have Marcus Hogberg in the Sens system.


Prospect update (players signed are in green, those for whom decisions must be made this year are in red):

SHL (Sweden)
Mikael Wikstrand (DOB 1993, DL, 7-196/12, Frolunda) 46-5-15-20
Regular season is over; he finished 14th in scoring by a defenseman; no points in two playoff games
Andreas Englund (DOB 1996, DL, 2-40/14, Djurgarden) 49-2-3-5
Regular season is over; has not dressed in the playoffs
Marcus Hogberg (DOB 1994, GL, 3-78/13, Linkoping) 12-11-4 2.30 .917
Regular season is over; finishes 10th in GAA and 8th in save percentage; has not played in the playoffs


Tobias Lindberg (DOB 1995, C/RW, 4-102/13, OHL, Oshawa) 64-31-44-75
Five points in his last three games, moving him up to 18th in overall scoring
Francis Perron
(DOB 1996, C/LW, 7-190/14, QMJHL, Rouyn-Noranda) 62-27-47-74
Two points in his last three games, dropping him to 25th in overall scoring
Nick Paul (DOB 1995, LW, 4-101/13 Dallas, OHL, North Bay) 56-35-29-64
Two points in his last three games; dropping him to 36th in overall scoring
Vincent Dunn (DOB 1995, CL, 5-138/13, QMJHL, Rimouski) 46-19-13-32
Has not played since last time
Ben Harpur
(DOB 1995, DL, 4-108/13, OHL, Guelph/Barrie) 56-5-26-31
Two points in his last three games
Miles Gendron (DOB 1996, DL, 3-70/14, BCHL, Penticton) 54-5-12-17
Has six points in seven games in the playoffs


Quentin Shore (DOB 1994, C/RW, 6-168/13, U Denver) 35-9-14-23
Two points in his last two games
Robbie Baillargeon (DOB 1993, CR, 5-136/12, Boston U) 24-3-12-15
Two points in his last two games
Shane Eiserman
(DOB 1995, LW, 4-100/14, U New Hampshire) 34-4-11-15
Two points in his last three games
Kelly Summers (DOB 1996, DR, 7-189/14, Clarkson) 33-6-4-10
Has not played since last time
Chris Leblanc (DOB 1993, RW, 6-161/13, Merrimack) 28-5-4-9
No points in his last game

Tim Boyle (DOB 1993, DR, 4-106/12, Endicott) 18-3-8-11
His season is over

I have a full Binghamton update in the works as the team approaches the end of their season.  With the Sens still winning we’re unlikely to see other call-ups any time soon (barring injury).  It’s been a tough season in Bingo and I think most of the problem is on the blueline and in goal, but I’ll get into that with that post.

Ludwig Karlsson, moved in the Jason Spezza trade, has bombed out of the Dallas organisation.  He was traded from the ECHL affiliate in Idaho to Missouri (which is St. Louis’ affiliate).  I expect the Swede to sign in Europe at season’s end.

This article is written by Peter Levi (@eyeonthesens)



  1. […] set up a trade, as now other GMs know Murray is under the gun to move someone.  While I’ve advocated moving Andrew Hammond (something echoed by Nichols at the 6th Sens), it seems like the organisation is […]

  2. […] over (.908, 2.64). This, and his career as a journeymen, sound alarm bells–the same alarms that went off before they signed Hammond to his 3-year deal. If you want to argue Condon is a […]

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