An update from the AM skate

- January 29th, 2013

Thought our friends here might find this interesting. Don’t usually just post an online update here but this is worth repeating.

Jason Spezza will be a spectator Tuesday night.
The Senators centre wasn’t on the ice for the second straight day and won’t be in the lineup against the Washington Capitals with what the coach Paul MacLean is describing as an upper body injury.
The good news is captain Daniel Alfredsson will return to the lineup after missing one game with the flu.
“Spezza is out,” said MacLean. “He’s just being further evaluated so he needs to take some time to do that.”
MacLean said he isn’t sure about Wednesday’s visit by the Montreal Canadiens either. MacLean confirmed Spezza was hurt in Sunday’s 2-1 shootout loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins but didn’t give any further information.
“At this point, I don’t know,” said MacLean. “We expect that he would play (Wednesday) but we’ll have to see how the evaluation goes.”
Centre Peter Regin has been promoted to play on the top line in place of Spezza with Milan Michalek and Jakob Silfverberg.
“I’m not going to be Jason Spezza so I’ll just try to play the way I can and the way I’ll play,” said Regin. “That’s what I’m focusing on.
“You have to make the most of the opportunity because you don’t get too many of them. I’m going to try to make the most of this.”
Top pick Mika Zibanejad is also drawing into the lineup. The healthy scratches are going to be defenceman Andre Benoit and winger Kaspars Daugavins. Here’s an updated looked at the club’s lines and defensive pairings:

Forwards
Milan Michalek-Peter Regin-Jakob Silfverberg
Guillaume Latendresse-Kyle Turris-Daniel Alfredsson
Colin Greening-Zack Smith-Chris Neil
Jim O’Brien-Mika Zibanejad-Erik Condra

Defence
Erik Karlsson-Marc Methot
Sergei Gonchar-Mark Borowiecki
Patrick Wiercioch-Chris Phillips

Goaltenders
Craig Anderson (will start)
Ben Bishop

Categories: Hockey

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14 comments

  1. Mike8888 says:

    I think the Sen’s should call up Gryba for a few games. Even though they don’t have any D injuries, apparently he is having a terrific season in Bingo, and the added toughness he brings might be helpful. Bobby, you’ll like this, he apparently leads the AHL with a plus 23. Also, Lehner deserves a few games with the big club. Perhaps this can happen when Bingo has a few days off.

  2. Mike8888 says:

    I thought Zibanejad looked good last night. He has size and speed and doesn’t fear going to the dirty areas. He should only get better.

  3. Bobby Goodman says:

    You are right Mikey, it might be good to see Gryba play, but, is he a member of the “chosen”? Only the “chosen” get the opportunities to show their stuff. Silfverberg (the SEL Superstar) has 1 g in 6 games for one point and he played with Spezza and Michalek! Look around the league at many who never got the gaudy hype he did who have scored more goals! When XXX and Potvin ran out of excuses to celebrate him, he was largely ignored and demoted. We could say “wait, give him time and allow him to develop” but what do we see that gets us really excited and he is 22 years old? What is expected of him? I will tell you, he is expected to generate offence. Do you see that happening Mikey? He isn’t physical and his 2 penalty minutes in the AHL is a testimony to that. Will he be successful, well that will depend on (again) how the Murrays define success (for some, it is a moving target).

    And we have Zibanehad. Zibby sends a 15 foot pass at center ice to Condra who makes a wonderful play that allows Obrien to score and the cudos got to….Zibanejad!? Certainly not to my surprise, he was awarded a star…second star to be exact. He played on the PP as well. Does his 9 goals in two years merit this? Wouldn’t a 6-3 , 230 lb Latendresse, Neil, Smith or Michalek all be a better choice? I think the Latendresse experiment isn’t working out but if I was to have a body in front of the net to screen the goalie, it would be him. But right on queue, XXX and Potvin were totally on board.

    What is expected from Zibby as he matures; most certainly the Murrays have to be very disappointed with his performance the last two years (read all the excuses). I heard Potvin suggest he is playing for the Sens to gain some confidence…seriously? If you can’t score in a 3rd rate league and you can’;t score in a second rate league why would success suddenly happen in the best league in the world?! The thing is, he and Sly were very high draft choices so they will be successful whether they are successful or not to rationalize/justify why they were selected! Butler played 60 games because the Murrays desperately wanted him to score goals…he didn’t. How many games will these two play? I have a question Mikey, what do you expect they will do?

    I am very happy the team won, but it was, again, because Anderson was outstanding because for two periods the play was entirely in the Senators end! If Spezza is out for a few games or longer, the team will most certainly struggle.

    I like the kid Boro but he struggled with the puck last night and I thought Philips and Weircioch had tough nights. By all means, bring on Gryba. Benoit was playing well and he was dispatched to the press box.

  4. Bobby Goodman says:

    I am not convinced the goalie can be blamed for the loss last night, but White certainly can. His selfish and undisciplined acts killed any momentum their team had and led to 3 quick goals by the Sens! The team never recovered and looked totally lost after that.

    I am really surprised to read that PK Sibban is not entirely welcomed back by his team mates; is it a case of jealous envy. Did Markov really refuse to talk to, or about Subban? PK is the crowd favourite and every team has one (some come by it nauturally and others are manufactured). Les Glourieux could and should have had him in the line-up against the Sens last night but it looks to me like the new “regime” in Hab-town are forcefeeding a cultural change where by all are absorbed by the “body”. Is individuality gone now? Is there no room for personal expression? Must everyone in management present a stern expression (do we interpret that as them being serious?). It is kind of funny when you take into account that Bergevin was a real card, practical joker and team clown when he played! PK is full of personality and a multi-dimensional player! He will go into the corners, deliver punishing body checks, skate with the puck, create offensive opportunities and score goals with his big shot from the point. All this was forsaken last night because they wanted to make a point? Silly bugger if you asked me. Big Buff plays, management is totally hands off and he does his own thing especially as it relates to his diet. I get that the new “Regime” want to establish themselves but lets not get carried away.

  5. Pav says:

    Good Game last night.

    Bobby what we need is a goalie that can keep us in it…..

    Spez is having back surgery..

  6. Bobby Goodman says:

    Yes, Spez is gone and my interest level and the teams success just took a major blow.

    Anderson has been the one most responsible for the teams success so far this year but now he and his team will be tested and they simply cannot replace Rocko. His absence will be felt throughout the lineup as Maclean adjusts; Michalek, Greening (when he is blessed to play with him), the PK, the PP and Karly will all suffer the loss. Karly as great as he is will not be the same. Last year he said a major reason for his success was he got the puck to Spezza as quickly and as often as he could. The kid is humble and damn I love humble. BTW: did anyone see some of the moves he made last night? He set up Zibby after making a fool of a couple of Habs who are still looking for the jock straps, but Zibby missed (I would have scored two on the play!).

    The team played well and won the game last night Pav but I think it was mainly due to a fool’s over exuberance. Sunday’s test will be better and potential for a classic. The Habs will have their best goaltender and their best defenceman in the lineup. They will have the advantage of 20k raging Habs fans instead of just the10k who were at Scotia Bank Place. Prust will want another crack at Gums and Knuckles will want another crack at White! Greening will be a spectator. I almost saw the Big Rig fight…with Plekanek.

    The media are certainly going nuts over Zibby. Before the goal (a wierd deflection) he didn’t do much. Like Murray says: “his game is skating and making the odd hit”. He shouldn’t be expected to put up any real numbers…he never has! But I love his willingness to go into the corners and make an effort! We are still waiting for the SEL MVP to show his stuff. I see nothing really. Latendresse is slow and sloppy (the pre-season report was accurate). I wonder if the team will promote DaOates-like Costa, Hoffman, DD or Grant?

    The team looks like a tight bunch and you have got to love that!

    I hate the Raptors trade…I loved Davis and he loved being in TO. The kid cried when he go the news. The team was going to be good.

    I think San Fran will win (cannot stand Ray Lewis).

    It can be amusing to see the players intros with the mug shot with them announcing where they went to University. One young moron with the 49ers said some despicable things yesterday and he plays for a team from San Fran Cis Co! If you read his remarks you most certainly would object to the content but what was also alarming was his command of the English language! Even his forced appology was laughable: “..what I said was thoughts in my head and not what I really believe…”. Yep, he a university grad alright. 3 years of basket weaving for which he required a full time tutor!

    Does Sunday look like a great day on the couch? It most certainly does:

    - Golf in Dubai in the am
    - Sens at les Glorieux at 2:00
    - PGA to tape and watch at my leasure at 3:00; and
    - the Super Bowl at 6:30

  7. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Bobby:

    “Is there no room for personal expression? ”

    No, there is not. I helped a friend that was working grounds crew at the Corel Centre a while back, during the Emery era. Everyone would come to the rink and leave the rink in a nice suit, Emery would arrive in a suit with a fur trim jacket, colourful hat and be totally offbeat. That and the rest of his party hard behaviour caused a huge rift in the room. He was just too different, P.K. Subban is diffferent too. Too flashy off the ice, too arrogant, too flashy on the ice. Need to comform Bobby. That’s why I was VERY worried when Erik Karlsson wore a pink Barbra Streisand shirt…it had ominios shade’s of Emery’s individualistic behaviour and rang SEVERE alarm bells with me.
    Hopfully the Murray’s address this with him and tell him to wear a suit and tie away from the rink, everyone must be on the same page!

    Spezza is injured, sad news but I think we will see the team does quite well without him, even better than others think! The team simply does not need a Spezza or even Karlsson to win. Keep it close, keep it sleepy, keep it Nyquil-Hockey and Andy will make the saves while his hot streak remains (about 5-7 more games by my count) and just wait till the Wunderkind returns. I, for our, will not miss him as his creativity (and Karlsson’s!) borders on the dangerous at times! Better the team plays with structure. What kind of structure? Who knows. Outhouses are structures, the runs of Pompeii are structures but we keep getting told structure is “IT”!

    Silfverberg…local media sold us on him being the next coming of ALfredsson, he looks like the next coming of ANdreas Johansson. Of course MacLean can’t sit him down because he’s one of the Swedish Golden Boys.
    Zib is average, I told Team 1200 he would ceiling at a Swedis Mike Fisher and they ran me off the air, saying he was guaranteed to be a star! He’s played what, 11 games in the NHL and has what 3 points? I’m dying of excitement Bobby and Bruce! I’m dazzled like I haven’t been since watching Bill Muckalt crawl his way across our storied ice surface!

    Silf is already being called the “Swedish Bill Muckalt” in our circles, except he scored a goal! I guess the “Swedish Jonathan Cheechoo” would be more appropriate…Big deal…

    ALexander Ovechkin if a fat cat. If there was a case for not giving your athletes at 10-year, no-trade contract thta is it right there. Why remove motivation but ensuring player security? The player, especially if he is young, will only crap on you. We have a saying in French “Donne a manger a un cochon il va chier sur ton perron”. In other words, you can’t make a silk purse of sow’s ear! And Ovechkin is a lazy bum!

    If we can’t beat the awful Carolina tonight MacLean needs to have his Jack Adams credentials checked! Easy two points people!

  8. KevinF says:

    Ian Mendes is great,everyone at the team1200 are cool , we make fun of each others appearance and wardrobe(backslap couple of us played in the NHL ) ha, ha ha. The Sun is a fantastic value.

  9. Bobby Goodman says:

    Why wouldn’t Mill Phickleson use his driver on 18. He hit it great all day and for some reason he puts it on the bench for a three wood (to play safe) and puts it in Davey Jone’s Locker for a double bogey.

    I love the Raptors trade.

    Someone tell me again what’s so great about Silfverberg? Certainly he did great in the SEL and he was playing well enough in the “A” but he hasn’t been able to do anything in the bigs. He is now completely ignored by the media and announcers alike. I want to see something, anything from the guy. I feel sorry for the kid. The expectations were set so damn high. Even simple plays are now difficult for him and that is what happens when your confidence is shaken/gone.

    Zibby is not a centerman so why have him in the middle? He is not a goal scorer so why have him on the PP? We will not see him take the puck and carry it great lengths, deking the opposition and creating opportunites, that is not his game. He his a hard skating, puck pursuit guy who will not quit and that is it. So when I here the announcers talk about him and see the numbers on his FO% it really is silly. One of the most worn out expressions we here when a star gets hurt is “we have to do it by committee”. Zibby will not be one to put up points. He may replace a 3rd or 4th liner but he will not help with the loss of Spezza. He could go on the wing with Knuckles and Gums! Will DaOates-like Costa get a chance?

    It looked like Regin had his best game and perhaps he is a better fit on the wing with Turris and God. I do not believe Latendresse had another one day stomach flu.

    Obrien actually looks like he is faster and is…effective. Condra is a smart hockey player and gets the most out of what he’s got and he has some good moves. Daugavins is a bum.

    The PP was horrendous. Andersson again…again…was fabulous. Greening’s contribution, the way he is playing now, is nill. He doesn’t skate, he doesn’t shoot, he loses the puck everytime it is on his stick, he falls down a lot, he doesn’t hit…so what does he actually do? Have we ever seen him take a pass on the fly? Have we seen his speed? Smith and Neil are playing a man short.

    It looks to me that Karly sometimes gets a little too casual. He also tries to force things that aren’t there and lost the puck a few times (things that Spezza always got crucified for by fans and the media alike). He got turned right around on the Semin play and ended up on his ass. He lost the puck in front of his net, he lost the puck a couple of times as the last man back. He is one of the best skaters in the league and stickhandling is far more effective with speed.

    Speaking of Semin…is that really Semin? Did I see him back check? He has always been blessed with unbelievable skills and as a result he can hold on to the puck, make time to allow others to get into position even in the most congested areas and then get the puck to them.

    Benoit has yet to play a bad game!

  10. Bobby Goodman says:

    I think Therieault’s question whether PK is in game shape or not has been answered (he conceded he was in great condition).

    PK, in a limited role, led the team with 3 hits; he carried the puck out of his own end, he went into corners, he made great passes and got a point from his big shot. For all the PP time, Markov didn’t have on shot in the game. Playing great hockey on the back is much more that simply putting up points (reference Chara last night). Subban played his first game and was great and will get much better. It is too bad the team has robbed him of his personality, zeal, verve, fun. I believe whatever you do, you do far better when you are having fun! White makes a mistake and in a game of high emotion it can happen, so he gets to eat popcorn. No doubt he will be dressing today.

    The NHL players themselves said Kessel was the easiest player in the league to intimidate; last night it was evident. Grabovsky, Bozak and Kulimen have far more courage. Kessel, blessed with so many skills lacks a pair and is a perimeter player at best. I don’t know who would want him. Did Burke make a great trade (Hamilton and Seguin)? Did Phaneuf play yesterday; I didn’t see him punish anyone but I did see the 27 year old Koska play great!

    It is interesting how some Coaches can’t make a mistake. Every decision they make is rationalized as a good one. Carlyle sends Frattin down to the Marlies at the start of the year, a mistake but the media justify it (he wasn’t plaing the way the /cach said he should – BS); when he is recalled, it is because he learned from is experience in the manures and Carlyle is a genius. Kadri didn’t make the team last year and again this year after training camp and has been one of the team’s best players when he was recalled…damn Carlyle’s judgement is impeccable. .

    If Carlyle is focussed on defence, his plan must be to allow 30 plus shots a game and have Reimer stand on his head. Damn Carlyle is a guru. “He likes to match lines”! What coach doesn’t when they have home ice advantage!!!…expecially when you have a scared Kessel on your team!

    Watching Steckle play with is size and skating ability you have to wonder what is missing. I would like to see him on the 4th line with the Sens with a players coach. I would like to see Deschene or Orielly with Ottawa; how much under the cap is the team?

    Do sticks really disintigrate? Do they explode? Will they soon vaporize, dissolve? Don’t they simply break? Is it possible for any player, goalie or skater, to have “a good active stick”? Is there a bad active stick? Is there a good active paddle in ping pong, a good active racket in tennis, a good active bat in baseball, a good active foot in soccer? It is all really very silly and the announcers are testing the limits of their imagination to make the game “more exciting”???

    The Sens will need all hands on board today.

  11. Pav says:

    Maybe I am losing it but are the fans in mtl booing Suban?

    Game is slow. I expected more after what happened last game.

    Back to Suban, he is good but not great. My gut tells me he will end up being a great D man but he needs to smarten up. I hear the coach banned the triple low five? His teammates must be tired of his attitude.

    btw what’s up with Healy on CBC?! Can he be anymore…… Horrible? Brutal tandem of galley, Healy and cole.

  12. Bobby Goodman says:

    How can an NHL defenceman play an entire game as important as the one against the Habs today and not register a single hit. The 6-3, 215 lb $4m Big Rig did’t register one, neither did Weircioch nor did Karlsson in his 32 miutes of icetime. Guys who should be doing some hitting didn’t, included: Condra – 0, Daugavins – 0, Michalek – 0, Obrien – 0, Silfverberg – 0, Zibanejad – 0 and Smith – 0 (at least he had the puck on his stick a lot, killed penalties and won face offs).

    Alfredsson (who is slow and looks tired), Boro, Daug, Karly, Methot, Mikalek, Philips, Regin and Silfverberg, were all in the minus column (Regin was -2 and in 4 games, Daug is now minus 4…and he got a one way contract for 650k?). No one was in the plus column today. Why does Zibby take faceoffs? What did he do today? Other than a nice break away PP goal, what did/does Sly do? Montreal’s two youngsters looked fabulous, want and carry the puck, make great plays and get themselves involved in areas where it is very tough indeed! In 15 minutes of play Subban hit people, he carried the puck, made great passes, was plus one and never gave the puck away. Their PP was far better when he was part of it!

    I said Spezza’s absence would hurt the entire team and it has. Ottawa’s PP was an embarrassment. Who is making it happen in Rocko’s absence? Who is coming all the way back to get the puck and carry it out of his own end? Where is the creativity? We have heard about the great depth of the organization (more propoganda like the great MVP from the SEL and Zibby). We will be witnessing the depth soon enough in a tough game vs Buffalo on Tuesday followed up by another tough one against Carolina. I understand they have recalled DaOates-like Costa and it will be interesting to see how his game has developed. We know (from Dave) he doesn’t bring it every night, is soft and I wonder how he and the team will do vs Pittsburg (now that they are going), NYR, Boston, San Jose, Vancouver, Islanders and even the crappy but much tougher Leafs.

    Ottawa’s great start was very misleading. They played Winnipeg and teams have feasted on them. Then they played the worst team in the league twice, the Florida Panthers without Weiss, Versteeg and Bergenhiem.

    If Sly and Zibby are the cornerstones (along of course with Karly) of the rebuild now in the 2nd of the 3 year term, I must say that the team is in trouble. The Sens will need more players, with far more skill and more years for the rebuild.

    Does anyone know how far below the Cap the Sens are? I would think it would be difficult to rebuild when a lot of money is left in your jeans.

  13. Bobby Goodman says:

    Of course it wasn’t Zibby but it was Sly who scored the beautiful break away, PP goal yesterday as he came off the bench and caught the Habs with their pants down.

    It is my understanding that the Cap this year is $64m and Ottawa spends to $50m. If it is true that Spezza who is out and has his $7m forgiven, it allows for even more for the Sens to spend. It is very difficult for Ottawa to compete if they continue their austerity program.

    I love the game and the Sens but will not be fooled by propoganda. The $2m spent on Latendresse is not working (the early reviews were accurate, he needs work, is slow and sloppy). The Daug is in no way an NHLer but he was inexplicably, like Daisey the Air Rifle, rewarded with an NHL contract. Silfverberg for all the hype the last two years has shown us very little. As much as Brown and Potvin want to be good corporate citizens giving Zibby stars in his first two games for a 15 foot pass and a goal on a wierd diflection, he is a hound at best who chases pucks and that is all. Greening for all his “speed”, size and shot is simply taking up space out there! Boro is a courageous kid but he would be a 6th or 7th defenceman on most other teams (at best). Benoit, with so little fan fare flies well under the radar screen, has looked great (but he is not a member of the “Chosen” therefor he is largely ignored). Methot has fit in well with Karly but lets be honest, is it a tough job to sit back and cover for a 4th forward? Is it tough to give Karly the puck as much as possible. The 18 year old Galchenyuk who has 7 pts and is plus 5 and the 5-8 Gallagher who has 5pts and is plus 6 kept Karly and Methot hemmed in their own end with their relentless pursuit, courage to go into the corners and bang the crease! The same can be said of the 5-7 Desharnais and Gionta! Did we witness the same effort by the 22 year old Sylfverberg and the 19 year old Zibbanejad both 6-1 and ovder 200 lbs?

    God is old/slow and this will be his last year so that will leave a Turris who is a dandy, alone. Assuming Spezza comes back healthy, he will be re-united with Michalek and they will again be waiting on a right winger! Neil and Smith are formidable 3rd/4th line guys but their linemate is a zero. Obrien is a borderline 4th liner at best. Regin, Philips and Gonchar all should be gone next year.

    So I ask you, is this really looking good as the second year of the so called 3 year rebuild program? Murray will not find a buyer for Latendresse and I suspect this may be his last chance in the NHL. Bishop needs to play and play well to increase his value, otherwise, he will be a throw-in on a trade. But that would mean the team may lose games but is that so bad?. Make this a year for a great Canadian (or N/A) draft pick!

    I would move Bishop and Anderson or Lehner (why keep both of them). I am not sure about Lehner’s attitude. Lose and get a great draft and trade to get another draft.

    the

  14. Bobby Goodman says:

    Pierre, mon ami…that expression has been around before Moses wore out his first pair of sandals!

    Karly is a far cry from “look at me…I’m Ray Em Er ee”. So Karly wore a pink shirt. Did you ever see what God wore at a Sen’s charity Golf Tournament? Yikes! Karly is nothing like that moron Emery. Emery had an ego, he fought with team mates and staff, he missed team flights, he showed up late for practices, he stayed out late and “partied” during the Stanley Cup Finals, he fought with old men on the Queensway, he was constantly caught speeding in his rented, brilliant orange Lambourgini and HumV. Karly is as humble as hell…so what if he likes fashion (at least he isn’t pimping the joint out like Big Buff in his completely red suit or Emery in his completely white!).

    Personally, I don’t think the team would win a game without Karly and Spez. How would the team replace the league’s 4th leading point getter who was among the league leaders in: goals, assists, points away from home, face off wins, face offs taken, TOI, shooting percentage, game winning goals and how would the team replace Karlsson’s points, TIO, goals and assists which were embarrassingly more than the next dman?

    I know you don’t like and never did like Spezza but lets get a little bit serious here. Players with great skill take chances because they can. They can have patience with the puck because they are skilled. They will make the spectacular play most of the time but, some times it will fail and of course, all that is remembered is the goose egg. I have accepted the notion that Karly will play the way he is most effective. joining the ruroving. He will not block shots nor will he venture into corners but that is his game and that is how he is most effective. Together, he and Spezza are spectacular…if you love hockey, love skill, love creativity, you have got to love those two together.

    Pierre, you are right on about Silfverberg and Zibby. In spite of all the banter from Richardson, to Maclean (Zibby on the PP!), to les freres Murray and the many in the media loyal to those who will grant interviews…it just aint gonna happen with these two. Compare Galchenyuk to Zibby or the diminutive 20 year Gallager to Silfverberg…there is no comparison. Sly starred in a 3rd rate soft SEL, he was OK in the AHL and nothing in the best league in the world. Zibby never did much anywere!

    Pav, Galz is awful, Healey is a blowhard in love with Karlsson. He will show things that are OK and call them brilliant but he never gives the bad plays equal time. PK Subban is his team’s best defenceman. In two games he has two assists, is plus two and is very physical! He kills penalties makes the PP better and takes a regular shift. He’s great with the fans/media, dresses well but his ties are too wide. I like players having fun and expressing their individuality but not when it is divisive. PK is articulate and fun. Much to dislike here! I suspect some are simply…

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