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NFL CANADA


What's wrong with the Senators?
Sat, February 7, 2009

By CHRIS STEVENSON, SUN MEDIA

Jason Spezza figures it's time for a change.

After scoring on three of his first four opportunities in the shootout earlier this season, the Senators centre has missed his last two attempts, including a shot into the glove of Boston Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas in Thursday night's 4-3 loss.

"Players only have so many moves in their toolbox and I think the (scoring) percentages are going down," said Spezza. "You've got to have a couple of moves in your arsenal and change it up."

Sens shootout woes grow



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171 Comments

Somewhere Ray Emery must be smiling right now. Maybe it wasn't all his fault after all!

This team has alot of talented players who are ALL slumping for some reason. There doessn't seem to be any effort or motivation. Multiple coaches, same results. The team needs a major shakeup. Mark my words, it won't be long before the trades start happening.

In my humble opinion as a fan and observer only Auld, Heatley, Alfie, and maybe a couple of others are safe at this point in the season. Brian Murray is a hell of a GM, I have faith that once he decides enough is enough there will be a lot of guys leaving Ottawa.
dan, 2008-11-21 07:32:48

The team really needs to look at Bryan Murray and his choice of coaches. Last years collapse wasn't uncommon. Look at all the teams that went to the cup the year before and how they performed the next season, for whatever reason most temas experience a "Stanley Cup Hangover". I though they got off to a great start this year 3 of 4 points in Sweeden despite suspect goaltending against the Penguins, they dominated both those games. Since that time I believe Craig Hartsburg has very poorly managed the team and players. His calling out of his players after every loss in the media is tiring and in my opinion causing many of the issues. Like it or not it's not the way to get the most out of these high paid athletes. It might work well at the junior level but it simply doesn't work at this level. There was a comment Craig MacTavish made in the sun today about calling out Dustin Penner in the press, he said, "I don't do it very often, I can't think of a time I have ever done it, I don't believe in it" After Ottawa smoked Buffalo earlier in the year Lindy Ruff said to the press "We will sweep this loss under the rug and move on tomorrow. In the dressing room I'm sure he had more to say. Craig Hartsburg please quit airing the teams dirtly laundry to the press after every loss!! Bottom line Murray's personnel moves and coaching choices have been suspect and both he and Hartsburg have to go. On top of that Vermette, Fisher and Neil badly underperforming!
Richard S, 2008-11-20 17:45:05

Saying that the Sens should have signed Chara over Redden is fine now, but at the time Ottawa had just been bounced in 5 games the year before in the playoffs and Chara (who may have been hurt) was made to look like a 6'9" pylon by a faster Sabres team.
Will, 2008-11-20 14:23:00

Bring back EMERY, he was only to happy to take all the criticism, for a lackluster team, who's hype certainly is greater than the skill of it's players.

They better do something quick or like "every" professional sports team that has called Ottawa home. The so called fans will put there tails between their legs and run for the hills, like they do for every sport in this city.
OZZY, 2008-11-20 09:09:47

Nothing is wrong with the Senators. They are exactly where I want them to be.... DEAD last in the conference.

LMAO
Jon, 2008-11-20 09:01:05

Ottawa has too many good players to be in such a slump. Bad chemistry.

A fly on the dressing room wall would likely tell you someone has to go.

It better happen soon. No matter who you cheer for, you'll have to agree, they're wasting the career of a good captain in Alfie.
Probert, 2008-11-20 08:41:40

Gary O you are a straight shooter. Na na hey hey goodbye did not go over well with many people on either end of the score at the Habs games.

Of course they had to do something to pump up the fans to avoid a revolution from both them and the media.

With some of the teams they assembled in that time, you have to wonder just why they would bother taunting only to get their butts kicked at a later date by the victim team.

Face it, aside from Patrick Roy, and a few other decent players that had a cup of tea, ( or a pint of beer ) with the Habs during that spell; the organization was not strong and they were not producing on their drafts well. Some years in the 80's were worse.

93 was one of the freakiest runs ever seen by a team with the overtime and 1 goal wins. Roy was outstanding and Leclair seemed to have a horseshoe perfectly positioned.

I go back to the late 60's as a kid, I remember beating the Blues in 68-69 as my first real memory following the Habs.

As for what the Sens are going through now, this does not appear to be terminal for 2 reasons:

It's still early and moves can be made with time to adjust.

Some of the competition will fall as injuries take their toll and the think they can teams suddenly hit their wall and become bet they won't teams.
AndyV., 2008-11-19 20:09:50

The Sens are a broken and fragmented team at present.That doesn't mean they can't fix some of the cracks and holes and turn their season around,but if they don't improve by mid-season there could be some heads that roll or major trades.I'm amazed at how far they have fallen from two or three years ago when they were the near the top.No easy answers,other than poor chemistry.


Johnny, 2008-11-19 19:59:26

I agree, letting Chara walk away and keeping Redden was the biggest mistake the team ever made. BUT... the team would look radically different now if Chara had been signed long term. Good or bad, who knows? Either Spezza or Heatley would have been long gone if that had happened.
dave, 2008-11-18 17:09:34

Merth, as a die-hard Sens fans, perhaps you could enlighhten us as to how you would have paid the players you think they should have kept!

Right now, Ottawa has approximately 50% of their available cap space tied up in 5 players - Heatley (7.5), Spezza (7 mil), Alfredsson (4.4), Fisher (4.2) and Phillipos 3.5) - for a total of $26, 614,000.

You say it was stupid to let Redden, Meszaros, Commodore, Stillman and Corvo go. They signed elsewhere for, respectively, $6.5 mil, 4, 3.75, 3,5 and 2.6 for a total of some $20,408,000.

You then say they never should have let Chara go! All he gets in Boston is $7,500,000 per. Had they kept all you list they'd be paying $54,522,000 for 11 players. How do they then fill out the roster with the other 9 players needed? Including goalies!

Pressing, now in L.A., gets 2,750,000 per and Comrie, before getting dumped by the Islanders, got $3,750,000 per.

I can't disagree with you re Emery. What bugged me the most about that is Murray missing the UFA boat while he waited for Emery and his agent to come to terms. He then did it again this past summer by letting Meszaros and Vermette jerk him around and missed out on Campbell and a couple of other he was interested in. What he should have done was go ahead and sign Campbell or whoever and worry about the cap later, as the GMs of Anaheim and New Jersey did. He wouldn't have had any trouble trading away both Meszaros and Vermette before the cap kicked in.
Gary O., 2008-11-18 15:14:09

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