A lot of things have happened since I last blogged about the Sens, for me personally and for the team. Let’s start with me:
- I spent the better part of three weeks in California, where I was able to attend homegames for both the Los Angeles Kings and the Anaheim Ducks. Coincidentally, the visiting opponent in both cases was the Ottawa Senators. I wore my Spezza jersey, cheered loudly, and managed not to get beaten up by Ducks fans, who are, despite what you might think, very friendly people. I witnessed two miracles during my time in California: a Jonathan Cheechoo goal in LA and an Ottawa shootout win in Anaheim. Well, technically, that’s three miracles since a shootout win and a win in Anaheim are both pretty rare.
- I finished school. HELL YES.
- I left Vancouver. I have now moved back to my beloved hometown of Ottawa. This move leaves me with a bit of a dilemma as I am no longer a displaced Senators fan and the title of my blog technically no longer applies. Some editing will be required, but I don’t think I’ll change the name. Thoughts?
- I joined the world of the gainfully employed. This partially explains why I haven’t been blogging: for once I have a job that actually requires me to spend most of the day working. The horror!
Major life changes, as you can see. Now, let’s recap what the Sens have been up to:
- Winning an assload of games.
I think that about covers it.
Tonight, the boys are back in town post-Olympics (OLYMPICS WOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!! CANADAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!) and we start to see just how much momentum they have left from their pre-pause play. Hopefully, it’s a lot. As friend of blog Senators Lost Cojones pointed out via email the other day, “NO Ottawa Senators were harmed in the making of this Olympics.” This is key. In fact, it’s fair to say that all Ottawa’s hockey Olympians suffered some form of embarrassment at the games — Daniel Alfredsson, Milan Michalek, Filip Kuba, and Anton Volchenkov were all eliminated in the quarter finals, with Volchenkov’s Russian team suffering a tremendous ass kicking at the hands of Team Canada (CANADA WOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!); Jarkko Ruutu won a bronze medal for Finland, but I’d like to see him try bragging about that after the so-bad-it-defies-belief collapse the Finns had against the United States in the semi final. Could the anger and shame these players feel motivate them to play at a higher level in Ottawa? Who knows, but we can hope so.
As you may have heard, tomorrow is the NHL trade deadline, a day when many NHL players start looking for moving companies. (By the way, Global Pack N’ Ship of Vancouver? Terrible.)
In advance of tomorrow’s frenzy, the Sens today sent San Jose’s second round pick to the New York Islanders in exchange for defenceman Andy Sutton. I’m going to be honest: I don’t know anything about this guy, but I looked him up and apparently he’s 6′6″. That’s really tall. With the pre-Olympics (CA-NA-DA! CA-NA-DA!) trade of Alexandre Picard and the injury to the awful Chris Campoli, the blue line was looking a bit thin, so it makes sense for Bryan Murray to go after another d-man. Like I said, my Sutton knowledge is very thin but 12 points in 54 games this season on Long Island tells me he’s not an offensive force and he’s in the NHL’s top 25 hitters this season so I assume he’s a physical type. Balance on the Sens’ defensive line appears somewhat skewed now, with Chris Phillips, Anton Volchenkov, Matt Carkner, and Sutton all being primarily defensive players and only Erik Karlsson and Filip Kuba expected to put up points. (Campoli is too bad to count.)
As for Volchenkov and his pending UFA status, I’m completely with The Universal Cynic on this one, as I said in my brief contribution to Cycle Like the Sedins’ Northeast Division deadline-themed post: I understand that Murray is in a predicament, but it simply does not make sense to trade a hugely important component of the team right now just to avoid losing him for nothing on July 1. The worst case scenario here — complete destruction of team chemistry, things fall apart, no playoffs, mass firings, trade the entire roster, move the team to Kansas City … okay, maybe that’s a bit of an embellishment, but it could be horrific — is bad enough to make the best case scenario not worth the risk. The A-Train should stay put, for now and hopefully forever.2 comments