A quiet day

- October 3rd, 2010

The Senators will hold their first practice as a team Monday morning in Petawawa.
Safe to assume they are up there today doing team building activities to get them ready for the start of the season at CFB Petawawa.
Of course, as they prepare for the run to the post-season, the biggest questionmark is the goaltending. Especially after the way Pascal Leclaire and Brian Elliott performed during training camp. They both left a lot to be desired on a lot of fronts.
How does Bryan Murray feel?
Well, he wouldn’t even discuss the matter following the club’s 8-5 victory over the New York Rangers Saturday night at home.
New goalie coach Rick Wamsley must be pulling his hair out watching the way these two have played. It says here Leclaire will be the starter. He was brought here to be the No. 1 goalie and has a big pricetag.
The reality is, if they lose Friday night against the Sabres, then coach Cory Clouston can easily turn to Elliott on Saturday night at the Air Canada Centre against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Clouston said recently the goalie with the hot hand will be playing. That came after telling some media in Toronto earlier in the month he’d like one or the other to reach up and grab the job.
Goaltending has always been an interesting dynamic in Ottawa. This year doesn’t look like it’s going to be any different.

Categories: Hockey

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23 comments

  1. Visitor - Pierre D says:

    “How does Bryan Murray feel?”

    Who knows?
    From what we read Murray likes to “put his feet up” instead of doing important things like analyzing the cap, examining appreciating and depreciating assets, setting high standards for his players, putting out player fires in public, adding to his scouting staff, planning for long and short term injuries, having a fallback plan not called Tim Murray.

    How does Bryan feel?
    Not a care in the world, working in a city where the media of all sorts don’t dare ask him hard questions and don’t dare list all that has happened under his reign for fear of upsetting him.

    Pity, because that would be a great read.

  2. BGoody says:

    Exactly V. When GMs are building teams with youth, size, speed, skill and agression, Ottawa is doing the opposite. I would like to know what it was that motivated Murray to draft Cowen over Pajaarvi. Cowen is big and that is all I see. If he hasn’t shown skating, puckhandling or physicality in Junior…he wont develop them as a 20 year old! Why they acquired Rundbland over Tarasenko (Rundbland was described as another PP specialist…they have them already in Karllsson, Kuba, Gonchar, Wierchoch and Campoli). Speed is not addressed when you sign: Kuba, Kovalev (no speed no heart), Gonchar, Ruutu, Winchester and of course Cowen. Who besides Carkner will make opposing forwards wary when entering Ottawa’s zone? The movement of Vermette looks like a bust. The trading of draft picks for Sutton and Cullen was a bust. The first round draft choice for Comrie and Campoli was a bust. Elliott is proving why he was the last player drafted in his draft year (but damn he can juggle). Why not give Brodeur a chance between the pipes? Did it work and will it work with Fisher between Kovalev and another winger? Will the coach demand an effort from Kovalev and what are the ramifications if he doesn’t? What are the expectations for Winchester this year (5 goals in two yeas does not cut the mustard and there are many who kill penalites better than him – Alfie, Kelly, Ruttu, Regin, Smith, Fisher. What will be the benchmark for success with Gonchar, Karlsson? Is Philips hurt? Hasn’t Campoli shown far more than Karlsson in both ends of the rink? Will Karlsson be consuming 24 minutes a game again this year? There are many questions that will go unasked and unanswered.

  3. PaV says:

    Bobby, if I may, I think its too early….. wait till we are 15 games in and then we can use a measuring stick. Leclarie was B R U T A L on Saturday, but I still have faith he can get the job done. I am not sure about Elliot.. I think he is nowhere near what he should be as a ‘backup’. But again, Leclarie is nowhere near being a number 1.

    The likes of Campoli, Foligno, Spezza etc will have to continue their stellar play in order to impress. The way Spez has been playing, he can easily be a 90-100 point guy.

    Can anyone tell me why there isn’t any video review during pre-season…? If the NHL sending a message saying that pre-season doesn’t matter?

  4. BGoody says:

    Emery, Gruber, Auld, Hasek, Brodeur, Elliott, Leclaire and now Lehner…we have had a few goalies in recent years. We seem to go through them like coaches: Ely, his predessor, the new goalie coach, Martin, Murray, Paddock, Murray, Hartsburg, Murray and now Clouston. YIKES!

  5. PaV says:

    Bobby, I hear Emery is available! He is apparently a Unrestricted Free Agent. As much as his actions were an annoyance, I think he has the ability to be a number 1. The question is, is he worth the headache?! ;-)

    I hope they do right about Lehner – allow him to develop. What are your thoughts about him?

  6. Iggy says:

    So are you going to answer the question of the day.
    Either one of you.
    HOW TALL IS AND HOW MUCH DOES KARLSSON WEIGH

  7. BobbyG says:

    There is a reason he is an unrestricted free agent Pav and available…no one wants him. He was basically on a trial signing one year contract with Philly and they don’t want him back. Is this just bad luck…no. I never liked him as a human being and I never liked him as a NHL goaltender. Aparently Murray did…signing him to an inflated contract in spite of him continuously demonstrating he was not committed to anything but self indulgence.

  8. Dennis_w says:

    Iggy,

    What’s with your obsession about Karlsson’s measurements? Are you planning on asking him out on a date?

  9. Potter says:

    Pav: you answered your own question, earlier: the pre-season doesn’t matter. Doesn’t matter how well, or poorly, someone plays against and with a less-than-full team. But we can’t ignore the obvious: neither of our goalies has been very sharp the past two weeks.
    But I don’t really care about that. I just hope, heading into the real season, that we don’t have a repeat of the Paddock & Hartsburg (and to some extent Clouston) days, with “win and you’re in” and “I didn’t like the goals”. My opinion: one of the reasons we have been burning through goalies is that we haven’t had a coach since Martin who will actually defend the goalie against the media. I would like to see Elliott, or (preferably) Leclaire get a little slack and play some consecutive games and see what happens.

  10. Iggy says:

    Hey Dennis_w
    just wondering, but I don’t think these guys are allowed to be honest.
    A point came up where I said the Ottawa defense was too small and weak.
    Someone stated that Karlsson was 6 feet tall.
    NOT
    So it’s not an obsession, I know these guy hang around and see the players in street clothes
    and they know.

  11. Dennis_w says:

    Iggy,

    Just joking around. Frankly, I don’t really pay attention to the assessments of writers. They’re supposed to report the facts. I can think for myself and do my own analysis.

    But I could care less about how big or small or fast or slow a plyer is supposed to be. The question is: How is he and the performing?

    And I’m definitely not one to write of a prospect before he’s even played a full season.

  12. Nancy D says:

    There are pics out there of Karlsson and Alfie hanging out tgether in their street clothes. Karlsson is a good 2+ inches taller than Alfie, but has a lean frame. In the NHL height is good, but its the strength that’s most important, and I don’t think Karlsson’s frame can pack on too much muscle.

    I’ll go with Pavan and Potter. We need to give our goalies a little confidence out there. Better team D, more support from the coaching staff, and a bit of time to allow whoever is #1 to get into a groove. Goaltending has a large mental component to it, so the rest of the organization has to do their part to help that along.

    Can’t wait for the season to start!

  13. PaV says:

    @Bobby, odd, for some reason I thought you were a Emery fan!

    @Potter, deep down I knew that the pre-season isn’t worth squat. But hey… hockey is back on baby!

  14. bruce.garrioch says:

    Iggy. I haven’t measured the guy. Neither has Don. I have no reason to believe he’s anything less than they say on their website. Have a nice day. We’ll put a new post up later.

  15. chris says:

    I see no flaws with Karlsson’s height….and neither does don.

  16. Iggy says:

    Ok, thanks, just wondering, he sure looks small, but you guys know better than any of us.

  17. PaV says:

    Well its that time again, season is about to start. Bobby, Potter, Nancy, OD, VIS.. and everyone else, time to make your perdicitions!

    Last year, I perdicited that the SENS would be hard pressed to make the post season and they ended up being 5th! .. so I am going out on a limb and saying that the SENS will finish 5th or 6th this year.

  18. Nancy D says:

    Eww…..I dunno Pavan. If the goaltending holds up or we trade for a great goalie, I can see us hitting 3rd. If the goaltending goes badly, we could be 11th. It’s so hard to tell with this team.

    We’re at that stage where we’ve had success, hit a downward slide, stabalized and are now just hovering. Some of the old timers on the team have settled in to the point they’re just going through the motions (Phillips and Kelly, I’m looking at you!), a lot of core guys are getting older……..it almost feels like we’re following a Leaf pattern, where some guys re just too comfortable to bother giving the best effort every night.

    I just don’t know this year what to predict. Best I can say is somewhere between 5th and 10th. Just can’t seem to narrow it down any further than that. :(

  19. Potter says:

    Pav, hope that is a stout limb, enough to hold the two of us. I think the 10th place prediction I read somewhere is way off: I like third, yep, winning the division, why not. Key players are on the up-slope of their careers (Alfie excluded, but he is a different cat). I think the addition of Gonchar more than makes up for the loss of Volchenkov, and should make a big difference on our PP (although this make take some patience, which I know, for Ottawa fans, means until Game 2!). I don’t see why they can’ squeeze six more points out of the season, six being the margin between first and second in the div last year.

  20. BGoody says:

    Pav my man, unless we get some defencemen (who defend) and goaltenders (who can make saves), I am afraid that a playoff birth is simply not doable…I am hopefull though.

  21. Visitor - Pierre D says:

    6th in the East.
    I think WAS, NJ, Pitts, Bos or Buf ahead of us for the top 3.
    Our G is too inconsistent and many of our forwards are on the wrong side of 30.

    What works in our favour is that the East isn’t really, really strong. We could clinch the NE if it gets sloppy with Buf/Bos.

  22. Daniel Murphy says:

    Pavan and all, if we get decent goaltending, the only teams that are or might be better than Ottawa in the East is Washington and perhaps Pittsburgh. In my opinion Pittsburgh is not that formidable once you get past Crosby and Malkin.

    I am predicting a first place finish in our division, if and only if our goaltending attains a professional level.

  23. PaV says:

    Ladies and Gents thanks for your thoughts and perdictions.

    @Potter – 3rd is going to be tough, but I like that you have faith
    @Nancy – 5-10….. I am hoping for 5 ;-)
    @Bobby – I think the D will be ok, lets see what happens. What do you perdict?
    @DM – Soild pick, but like Potter, you guys have a lot of faith.

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