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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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The Sens problems begin on the blue line - they should have kept Chara, AND Redden and traded everyone else. Now the fwds play looking back over their shoulders to see if they need help. This team with the same players was/is lethal when they get to play offense - when they just "go go go". Instead, they are a poor imitator of the New Jersey Devils.

Sadly, there isn't anyone on the blue line that can move the puck up to the fwds - and without Redden (love him or hate him) the first pass from the Sens zone gets to their blue line - not the redline like it used to, where it would be picked up by any of the Sens speedy fwds.

Bottom line - the d sucks, and because of that the fwds can't do what they are supposed to do. IMO it would be crazy to break up the big line - keep them together they are all we have. Its probably too late to save this season though. Sad. This team coulda/shoulda/woulda had 2 or 3 cups by now.
Capital Canuck, 2009-01-06 17:23:45

Ottawa's issue is that they as a team are one good line and a bunch of support players. They didn't have grit a long time ago and got to the point where they almost had enough, then it all went away starting with Chara. Now they have support players watching the big line from the bench and then coming out for a one minute skate.

I would first acknowledge that the team sucks. The Leafs have done so and now, suck as they may, they put in a 60 minute effort. Then, the Sens should spread the wealth. Put each star player on a different line and let them be hacked, checked and focused on, ie. carry some of the load. Maybe, just maybe they'll bounce in a few pucks off the support guys and make them feel part of the game. Certainly can't do any worse than last in the NHL for goals for. Just stop falling back on reuniting the one big line as a cure to all their problems, it's not working. Yes, they get the occasional goal but the whole team suffers.

Truthfully, the Sens problems started when they got rid of Lalime. The guy had the lowest playoff GAA of any active goalie and he gets the boot, then the team has to roll through old-Hasek, Emery, Gerber, Auld... in search of a minder. If they could make it to the finals with Emery then they could have gone further with Lalime is all I'm saying, despite his recent difficulties.
Rick W., 2009-01-06 16:01:38

Christina Neil fighting Ian White...that pretty much sums it up. The Sens are floaters who don't want to do the real work required to win. If a sub par team like the Leafs can go out and show some real work ethic most nights why can't a more talented Sens squad do the same? No excuse for being as poor as they are - they have enough talent to at least be competing for the 7th / 8th spots and they aren't even close.
Tucker Intensity, 2009-01-06 14:25:02

Jake, I think you've made your point. Hope you haven't suffered a dislocated shoulder from patting yourself on the back!

Having said that, what you say is accurate - (just no need to repeat it ad nauseum). I think we all agree that this is a very mediocre team - and that includes a fading captain and an overpaid Spezza and Fisher.

I think, however, that if they lose both the Buffalo and Boston games coming up both Hartsburg and Murray will be gassed at the same time. Then look for Quinn to be offered both jobs.
GaryO, 2009-01-05 13:15:10

Vandwemke:

You and other Sens supporters can't do it can you - measure the successes and failures of the Senators without reference and comparison to Leaf Nation. Therein lies Ottawa's biggest problem.

See my post just before yours. Don't feel bad, the team's owner can't do it either.

LOL
Jake, 2009-01-05 10:39:12

What's wrong? They suck, poor work ethic, no motivation...

The only good thing is they've done it for far less than 41 years straight!

They suck this year, put it behind us and get over it. I'm sure Mr Melnyk, will wake up come April or May and do what needs to be done. So may lessons learned available to be referenced, (Rangers spending before salary caps, the Sedin sisters in Vancouver, Toronto's draft and 'Trade for Vets' attempts). Sens season is done, desdinded to spoil others play-off hopes away, I hope.
Vandwemke, 2009-01-04 22:44:14

I'm starting to think that Melnyk is the problem, with his hate for everything Blue & White. First of all, he actually thought that he had a chance at signing Sundin to a Sens team that is clearly on the decline - a charitable assessment likely, in fact the Senators are awful. Melnyk stated publicly that Sundin's signing would be a blow to Leaf Nation as if that should be a consideration when determining the best moves for his team.

Now it appears that he's looking Pat Quinn's way for Craig Hartsburg's replacement, if things don't improve quickly. No doubt dreaming of having great success with the former Leaf coach and "tweaking the nose" of Leaf Nation.

Eugene: Get over the four past playoff losses to the Leafs and the fact that Toronto is on the rise while Ottawa is on the decline - the Sens will be better off for it. Forget about the Leafs and do what's best for your team.

Also, if Harsburg goes watch for Brian Murray to follow soon after. He's made two bad coaching decisions since his first departure from behind the bench. With his most recent decision, a better candidate was considered but he's now with Florida.


Jake, 2009-01-04 18:38:45

I love it when I'm right -check out my Dec 29 post. Just watched the Leafs beat the Sens, and cement head Neil starting a fight late in the game once again - with his team trailing. He takes the extra 2 to pretty much ensure a Leaf win. I love it.

This is what the Sens have reduced themselves to.
Jake, 2009-01-03 22:00:23

It's too late for the SENS to make trades at this time.

It’s time that the Senators GM Brian Murray, realizes that teams are built in the off-season. Montreal did it, Boston did it, and the Flyers did it. But they all did it in the off-season.

Any trade now will be a panic move. This can prove to be disastrous. Trading a 100 point player like Spezza is a perfect example of a panic move. That would be a disastrous!

Get Johnny Tortorella to coach in here. He has proven to win a STANLEY Cup. Hartsburg’s record at the NHL Coaching level is not impressive. He’s a good Junior coach maybe, but at this level he’s having too many problems. He had the same problems when he coached in Chicago.


Vince in Ottawa, 2008-12-30 23:58:27

The Senators players don't train hard enough in practice. Check out the show Arlovski 360 and this MMA fighter will show you what it really means to train.
Bill, 2008-12-30 22:10:20

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