The Butler needs to do it

- September 30th, 2011

Enjoying an off-day for the Senators at home. By this time next week, I’ll be in the Motor City ironing my shirt and getting ready for the opener.
Trying to motivate myself to finish all this stuff for our fabulous 20th anniversary celebration and NHL preview supplement that will come out next week. Most of it is done. Just three pieces left to do. That being said, thought I’d post some discussion material here.
Bobby Butler hasn’t had the kind of camp anybody expected. He is going to be counted on to score goals, hasn’t had much in the way of chances and certainly didn’t score any goals. He played a touch over seven minutes against the Boston Bruins Thursday night in Beantown.
That’s got to change once the lights are turned on for real. He has to put the puck in the net. That’s why he was given a one-way contract. There is no reason to worry just because he hasn’t scored in training camp, but it can hard for players to flick a switch.
l THE RUNDBLAD WATCH: Expect him to start the season here. He has improved through camp and was solid in the final two periods of the victory over the Bruins. Pretty clear he’s going to play here at some point because he’s got the talent just not the poise needed to make the right decisions here. The Senators are banged up and Matt Carkner won’t be ready for the opener. That means Rundblad will stay.

Categories: Hockey

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9 comments

  1. OD99 says:

    You are right Bruce and I am sure Butler is probably quite disappointed in his performace in the pre-season games so far.

    Has he looked off in training camp as well? From the games I have seen he isn’t skating well and isn’t involved in the play very often either. He has back-checked well and been in good defensive position but he needs to have several shots on net per game and that isn’t happening so far.

    I don’t think any of the Bingampton guys outside of Boro-cop have looked good actually…Condra has been invisible and Greening has only been noticeable because he received some top line minutes…I don’t count Cowen as a Baby Sens player but he has been outstanding to me, probably the Sens best D-man so far.

    The Bruins certainly looked full value for their Stanley Cup championship last night – they were buzzing, winning every battle and every race, going to the net hard and in general making the Sens look like the rookie laden, talent starved team they are.

    Anderson reminded me why I thought his signing was a good deal for us and is especially important seeing as how Lehner seems to be showing how much seasoning he still requires.

    Can’t wait for the opener…

  2. ChokerHater says:

    seems to me he was really hot late last year when games meant nothing and clown 888 was calling him the next big sniper in Ottawa

  3. BobbyG says:

    He played a touch over 7 minutes because he didn’t earn more! You can’t always rely on someone to give you the puck on a platter (like Spezza did last year). At some point, Butler has to “engage” and get the puck himself and MAKE

  4. BobbyG says:

    Butler got only seven minutes because he didn’t earn more…he can’t expect to always get the puck gift wrapped (…he is going to have to engage and make something happen! I also have a different opinion on Rundblad. He improved throughout the camp? I didn’t see it. With Carkner, Gonchar, Kuba, Philips, Karlsson, Lee…his position is tenuous at best. Since the game against Toronto and getting hunted and hit by some of their big bodies…I noticed a major difference in his play. Indeed he can stickhandle…but again I ask, is he a defenceman or another slick forward playing on the back end? With Carkner out for the opener…this will be the softest group of defencemen in the entire league. Not good. Also, I really liked it when Zack Smith and Chris Neil were on the same line…Have Condra join Winchester cutting oranges.

  5. Nancy D says:

    Butler was at training camp? Haven’t even noticed him on the ice for the handful of preseason games they showed on tv. Musta been a really bad camp.

  6. OD99 says:

    Chokerlover, it is preseason…these games actually mean nothing, games in the regular season always mean something.

    I think Rundblad has already shown he is going to be an elite D in the NHL – it is the hardest position to learn (outside of goaltending) but he clearly has the skill, size and speed to play. Once he figures out the smaller ice surface, imcreased speed and competitiveness of this game over the SEL I have non doubt he will be an big part of the Sens return to being a solid team in the playoffs.

    His poise is probably what strikes me the most – there is no panic in the kid so far. He calmly carries the puck, skates away from the forecheck with ease and makes nice passes plus he has a heavy shot and in the short time frame I have seen him, he angles himself away from players to make sure his shots get on net.

    He is a 20 year old rookie – sky is the limit

  7. Visitor - PierreD. says:

    It woul be nice if this team hired ad played peopl on merit instead of handing them golden plums in the hopes they’ll lie the city enugh to re-sign here once they become free agents. Rundblad has been average to awful. He needs AHL time to grow as a player, but again Murray is rushing him, who knows maybe he has to dress X Swedes a night. One of them (Swedes) Zibanejad, actually LOOKS like he’s earned his spot, playing hard on both sides of the puck, brillant youg man and I do not often praise! Speaking of which….read Spezza got the “A”, is this a preventive measure so he doesn’t cry and ask for another meeting with management or has Spezza FINALLY figured out how to win? His blatant high-risk pass, that ended on Grabovksi lets us think otherwise. I’m sure everyone in this town will coo and coddle him, but he has never won. No team Spezza has been on has won, sorry Bobby you can bring up all the PPG stats in the world but I can bring them back showing stat-padding against weak sisters. Spezza is a necessary evil and I will not wear his number 19 on my jersey until I see him bleed and play injured, heart and soul for this team!

    As for Butler, again with the “have to”. No one “has to” to anything here. Butler has a one-way and no one is going to claim him off waivers. He will haev a plum spot on the first or second line but ultimately he is nothing more than a third or fourth line on a team that is truly contending.

    It’s great to be back, nice to see you again Bobby, Bruce and Don, enjoy the trip to Motown and Hogtown!

  8. Visitor - PierreD. says:

    Nice to see yhou too choker and Nancy! Hope you are all well!

  9. BobbyG says:

    Isn’t this great…love rappin’ with y’all even if we don’t always agree. I am really hoping that Rundblad can evolve, but how many soft/nifty defencemen does this team need. Why does this coach have Karlsson on the ice killing penalties? Why is Butler even mentioned as a candidate on the top line? Didn’t Patersen look better than the “big three” Condra, Greening and Butler? Can anyone tell me why they all got one way deals? How hurt is Carkner (I hope not too bad because they need his toughness). V…you are right on about the “star making machinery”. Also, can the team and media please give us all a break on the super saturation of anything Alfie. I love the guy but enough is enough. To have jersey’s and an event emblazoned and scheduled to “Praise Alfie” is almost blasphemous! Yesterday there was no les than 4 pics of the guy and again today. I have loved him, he was rookie of the year, delivered in goals and assists and the longest serving captain but tame it down a bit please. BTW: I was never a big fan of him as captain….I always get the response that he led by example…if that was the case…who where the ones following?

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