Boston Bruins (0-0-0)
Ottawa Senators (0-1-0)
Location: Scotiabank Place at 7pm
Television/Radio: TSN and the Team 1200
Nikita Filatov – Mika Zibanejad – Bobby Butler
Nick Foligno – Peter Regin – Erik Condra
Shane Prince – Stephane Da Costa – Jim O’Brien
Kaspars Daugavins – Corey Locke – Mark Parrish
Jared Cowen – Sergei Gonchar
Brian Lee – Chris Phillips
Mark Borowiecki – David Rundblad
Craig Anderson & Alex Auld will split the goaltending duties
Game Day Notes:
Allen Panzeri is mistaken. Brian Lee is not a forgotten man. The fact remains that the Senators could have avoided this defensive log jam by simply walking away from Chris Phillips’ contract demands and team worst -11.0 Relative Corsi. (Note: Relative Corsi is a sabermetric hockey statistic that measures
a player’s effect on puck possession compared to the rest of his team.)
In today’s Ottawa Citizen, he wrote:
If both Cowen and Rundblad show they can handle the NHL, who gets moved to create room?
With a salary of only $925,000 U.S., Lee would be easy to move or send to Binghamton. At $700,000, Carkner would be easy to move, too, but that would leave the defence without anyone to throw a bodycheck.
And Kuba ($3.7 million), Gonchar ($5.5 million) and Phillips ($2.75) are all prohibitively expensive to sit or send to Binghamton.
Lee is nothing if not taciturn. He’s the archetypal midwesterner. Why use two words when you can use one?
Allen is getting ahead of himself. Looking at management’s history, there’s nothing to suggest that Bryan Murray will keep Cowen and or Rundblad in the fold even if they demonstrate that they can handle the rigors of the NHL. The aforementioned Lee is just the most recent example of this.
As two of the three defencemen who have two-way contracts (Erik Karlsson being the other), sending one of them down to Binghamton gives the organization the flexibility in event of an injury or to hopefully create a trade market for one of its other defencemen. For the organization to simply expose an asset like Lee or Carkner to waivers by sending them to Binghamton just doesn’t make much sense.
Even in the event that management wants to create room for its prospects, I’m not even sure that Lee is the right one to be moved. Since he won’t turn 25 until this March, Lee will be under team control for the next two seasons after this one. On another note, it’s nice to see that Panzeri referred to the stigmatization that Lee suffers. Unfortunately, he neglected to mention that in the same amount of games as Carkner, he outhit, blocked more shots and played against a higher level of competition.
Coincidentally Matt Carkner, like Filip Kuba is an impending UFA. While Carks has posted some impressive sabermetric numbers — a Corsi Rel of 6.8 and a defensive GVT of 3.2 — his -0.094 Quality of Competition rating (the worst amongst defensive regulars) demonstrates that he benefits from being matched up against the opposition’s bottom six forwards.
Considering the fact that he hasn’t played in a NHL game since February 26th of last season and that public or media pressure could lead to an re-examination of whether fighting should be permitted in the NHL and I think you have more than enough reason to consider moving Carkner first. Besides, thanks to players like Zdeno Chara and to a much lesser extent Carkner, how often have we heard pundits spew analysis about how it’s unwise for a defenceman to fight?
Frankly, the best thing for the organization to do is to be patient with one of its two prospects. By affording their veteran defenceman to improve their worth or shit the bed, at least the organization will do its due diligence before cutting ties.
Jim O’Brien Forgotten Man:
With fourth line centers like Jesse Winchester and Zenon Konopka headed towards UFA on July 1st, 2012, this year is an important year for JOB to prove that he’s a part of the future. That starts tonight against some fringe NHL-talent. I’m eager to see how he plays. (Note: I’m slightly bothered by the fact that I’m looking forward to watching two John Muckler draft picks perform tonight.)
Senators Goal Song Competition?
For anyone who’s unfamiliar with the competition that the Senators organization is running over on their Facebook page, the team posted five craptacular songs and allowed their fans to vote for which one they wanted to hear as the team’s official goal song. Which begs the question, in the age of musical accessibility why are we limited to MTV award show acts and Bluesfest flavours of the month? Does the payola scandal also extend to what’s played at hockey games?
Anyways, what the organization didn’t anticipate was Puck Daddy, Deadspin and a number of Toronto Maple Leafs blogs publicizing the contest with the intent to adversely affect the vote.
Thanks to this ballot stuffing, the organization came out and said that the goal song finalists will be put in rotation and that will have some bearing on which song they select. So with that in mind, it’s going to be interesting to see if it follows through and puts these five songs through a rotation.
So just remember fans, when you hear Nickelback’s Burn It To the Ground at one of the preseason games, don’t blame Leafs fans for inflating its vote totals. Blame the organization for its poor goal song selections.
Per Bruce Garrioch, the Senators didn’t plan to use Stefan Noesen (Plymouth), Matt Puempel (Peterborough), Jakub Culek (Rimouski), Matt Stone (Brandon) and Jordan Fransoo (Brandon) in exhibition games. Tryout goalie Matej Machkovksy was released.
Expect the next round of significant cuts to come some time this weekend.
Pre-Game Haiku Tweets:
Sens and Bruins play
Stanley Cup winners should lose
Let’s support the Sens
The Sens First Home Game
Alfie Lead The Way
Mike Modano quit
The same day as R.E.M.
Kelly shows off ring