Bruce Garrioch - February 8th, 2014
BOSTON _ The Senators will call it a day for the Olympic break Saturday at the TD Garden. Big day ahead. Big two points on the line.
The last time they were here they were blown out 5-0.
This team is playing different. This team is playing better. There is no Zdeno Chara to contend with for the Senators. I will be interested to see what coach Paul MacLean does with his lines. He did a shakeup in practice Friday and Bobby Ryan was demoted.
MacLean claimed he was fooling around. I don’t buy that for a second. Everything he does is calculated. He may have just been firing a shot across Ryan’s bow to let him know that he isn’t happy with his play and will return to his regular lines today.
I don’t know. I somehow doubt it.
MacLean has never been a man afraid to change his lines. If you don’t like what he’s doing just wait a minute because it all could change on the next shift.
Two points is paramount today. The Senators have a tough schedule after the Olympic break. Heading out on the right foot would be helpful.
Tell me what you think of these lines:
Colin Greening-Jason Spezza-Milan Michalek
Clarke MacArthur-Kyle Turris-Erik Condra
Cory Conacher-Mika Zibanejad-Bobby Ryan
Matt Kassian-Zack Smith-Chris Neil
The guys who need to get going: Cory Conacher and Colin Greening.
Ryan was best with Clarke MacArthur and Kyle Turris.
Bruce Garrioch - February 1st, 2014
The Senators took one on the chin in the Battle of Ontario.
It was closer than the 6-3 final but that is the way it finished.
The Senators seem to have a tough time beating the Toronto Maple Leafs in a game that matters. Phil Kessel had the hat-trick. Chris Neil tried to lead the way with two goals and an assist.
The league will have to decide if it wants to take action on Nazem Kadri.
His hit on Cody Ceci was pretty blatant. There has to be action by the league I think. Kadri is a repeat offender. There should be something in my opinion. Don’t think the league will agree. There was no call. We’ll see.
Don Brennan - January 28th, 2014
COLUMBUS – It’s rare that Senators GM Byran Murray does not accompany the team on a road trip, so naturally his absence here raises a question.
Is Murray back in Ottawa, or on a scouting trip, working out a big trade?
Or did he just realize this junket was a good one to miss?
The score as of this morning is Columbus 22, Ottawa 20. That’s the temperature, with a minus in front. And if it’s minus-22 here today, it felt like minus-40 last night.
I stopped by the hotel bar looking for some friends. The fellow beside me asked what was on tap. He settled on “Old Man Winter Ale”.
“It seems appropriate tonight,” he said.
I dropped by another spot to watch the Blue Jackets play the Carolina Hurricanes. Except even with the 40-odd TVs in “Brothers”, the Jackets game was not on. The Pittsburgh-Buffalo game was, but no Jackets.
How odd is that? They had won 8 of their last 9. Where was Jackets fever?
“Oh yeah,” the bartender said when I told him the home team was playing in Carolina. “It should be on. It’s probably over by now.
“Hey, do you mind if we put on a movie? We usually do on Mondays. It’s Animal House tonight.”
Just keep one TV on hockey if you don’t mind, I said.
I got to watch the end of the Penguins-Sabres game – Pitts was lucky to escape with a victory, no matter what the 3-0 final suggests – and also learned that the Jackets choked up a two-goal lead to lose 3-2 in Carolina.
Suddenly, the Jackets have lost two in a row. They’re not so hot anymore. And we wonder, does anyone in frigid Columbus really care?
Bruce Garrioch - January 27th, 2014
Just posted this story on www.ottawasun.com
The Senators are on the verge of cashing in on their valuable broadcast rights.
League sources told the Ottawa Sun the Senators are just dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s and the club is close to announcing a historical, long-term deal for the local television and radio rights.
An announcement should be made in the coming days.
While the current TV rights are held by Sportsnet and radio games are on TSN 1200, both agreements expire at the end of the season. There has been a bidding war for the club’s local package between the two broadcasters.
It is not known which side has own the bidding but the agreement should be in place by midweek but the competition between TSN and Sportsnet for Ottawa’s rights heated up after Rogers signed a 12-year, $5.2 billion agreement to take over the national broadcasts.
A report out of Montreal indicated RDS is paying a whopping $68 million per-year for the rights to 60 games and no playoffs. The Senators local rights won’t be worth as much but sources say the price paid will increase significantly.
It’s believed the Senators are the only Canadian team with local and tv radio rights expiring at the end of this season.
This is significant news for the team. It means more dollars in the coffers.
Think about the Montreal Canadiens: They have $68 million in their bank account before they even sell a ticket or spend money on players.
This is good news for owner Eugene Melnyk.
He must be pleased.
Bruce Garrioch - January 26th, 2014
The Senators have Sunday off.
Coming off a 6-3 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes Saturday, the club needs to get its act together to prepare for the Columbus Blue Jackets Tuesday.
This is a huge game. The standings are tight. The Senators need wins.
The Senators had a 6-0-1 stretch earlier this month. Now, they’ve got 1-2-2.
This has to stop and it has to stop quickly.
The Senators need to get back trending in the right direction.
Our friends at sportsclubstats.com give them a 27% chance of making the playoffs this morning. That is down from 40% about a week ago.
Lots of teams are pushing for a spot. The Senators are in that group.
Robin Lehner didn’t make any saves Saturday. The worst I’ve seen from him in awhile. Not sure what happened.
Captain Jason Spezza has to be better. He didn’t have any kind of game Saturday and that just can’t happen. The Senators need offence from Spezza and they need a better effort.
This team can make the playoffs.
This team should make the playoffs.
But if they don’t get their act together what happened early in the season will come back to haunt. Set the tone for the Olympic break and get back into position. That’s what the Senators need right now.