Been awhile

- June 21st, 2014

Sorry for the delay coming in here.
Was run around this month. Trying to get some holidays in plus was back and forth between Montreal plus the final two games of the Stanley Cup final.
Not much of a final. Anti-climatic really. We expected the Kings to win and they did.
So now what?
We wait for Jason Spezza to be dealt.
You have to think he will go at the draft.
Not sure they will get what everybody thinks they will.
I assume they will want a player, prospect and No. 1 pick.
There has to be more than St. Louis and Anaheim involved here.
Headed to the draft. Will do a better job keeping this updated through free agency.
From there going to take some holidays.
Nice to have the football team back.
Oh and here’s their schedule released on Sunday:

2014-15 Ottawa Senators regular-season schedule (all times Eastern and subject to change)
Thursday, Oct. 9, at Nashville, 8 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 11, at Tampa Bay, 7 p.m.
Monday, Oct. 13, at Florida, 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 16, vs. Colorado, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 18, vs. Columbus, 7 p.m.
Wednesday, Oct. 22, vs. Toronto, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 25, vs. New Jersey, 7 p.m.
Sunday, Oct. 26, at Chicago, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Oct. 28, at Columbus, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 30, vs. Chicago, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 1, at Boston, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Nov. 4, vs. Detroit, 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, Nov. 6, vs. Minnesota, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 8, vs. Winnipeg, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Nov. 11, at Vancouver, 10 p.m.
Thursday, Nov. 13, at Edmonton, 9:30 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 15, at Calgary, 10 p.m.
Thursday, Nov. 20, vs. Nashville, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 22, vs. St. Louis, 3 p.m.
Monday, Nov. 24, at Detroit, 7:30 p.m.
Tuesday, Nov. 25, at St. Louis, 8 p.m.
Friday, Nov. 28, at Florida, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 29, at Tampa Bay, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 2, at N.Y. Islanders, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Dec. 4, vs. N.Y. Islanders, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 6, at Pittsburgh, 1 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 7, vs. Vancouver, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Dec. 11, vs. Los Angeles, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 13, at Boston, 1 p.m.
Wednesday, Dec. 17, at New Jersey, 7 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 19, vs. Anaheim, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 20, at Montreal, 7 p.m.
Monday, Dec. 22, at Washington, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 27, vs. Detroit, 7 p.m.
Monday, Dec. 29, vs. Buffalo, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 3, at Boston, 1 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 4, vs. Tampa Bay, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 6, at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 8, at Colorado, 9 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 10, at Arizona, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 13, at Dallas, 8:30 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 15, vs. Montreal, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 17, vs. Carolina, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Jan. 20, at N.Y. Rangers, 7 p.m.
Wednesday, Jan. 21, vs. Toronto, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 29, vs. Dallas, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 31, vs. Arizona, 3 p.m.
Tuesday, Feb. 3, at New Jersey, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 5, vs. Washington, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 7, vs. Columbus, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Feb. 10, at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 12, vs. Pittsburgh, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 14, vs. Edmonton, 2 p.m.
Monday, Feb. 16, vs. Carolina, 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday, Feb. 18, vs. Montreal, 7 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 20, at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 21, vs. Florida, 7 p.m.
Wednesday, Feb. 25, at Anaheim, 10 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 26, at Los Angeles, 10:30 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 28, at San Jose, 10:30 p.m.
Tuesday, March 3, at Minnesota, 8 p.m.
Wednesday, March 4, at Winnipeg, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, March 6, vs. Buffalo, 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, March 8, vs. Calgary, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, March 10, vs. Boston, 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, March 12, at Montreal, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, March 13, at N.Y. Islanders, 7 p.m.
Sunday, March 15, vs. Philadelphia, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, March 17, at Carolina, 7 p.m.
Thursday, March 19, vs. Boston, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 21, vs. Toronto, 7 p.m.
Monday, March 23, vs. San Jose, 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, March 26, vs. N.Y. Rangers, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 28, at Toronto, 7 p.m.
Sunday, March 29, vs. Florida, 5 p.m.
Tuesday, March 31, at Detroit, 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, April 2, vs. Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 4, vs. Washington, 7 p.m.
Sunday, April 5, at Toronto, 7:30 p.m.
Tuesday, April 7, vs. Pittsburgh, 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, April 9, at N.Y. Rangers, 7 p.m.
Saturday, April 11, at Philadelphia, 12:30 p.m.

Stanley Cup final pick

- June 3rd, 2014

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Broadway vs. Hollywood.
The city that never sleeps vs. La La Land.
This is the Stanley Cup final that commissioner Gary Bettman and the owners could only dream about. Two of the NHL’s biggest markets facing off for the chance to take home the title.
Many think it could be no contest.
The Los Angeles Kings have won three straight seven-game series. They sent the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks packing Sunday night with a victory in the Windy City.
The Kings come from the West where many believe the best brand of hockey is played. The New York Rangers are not even being given the chance to compete here. This could be quick many believe.
I’m not sure I am in that school.
I think the Kings win but I think it takes them longer than people believe.
Henrik Lundqvist can do something that I’m not sure Jonathan Quick can and that’s steal games. The King is trying to win his first NHL title. Lundqvist can get hot. Quick wasn’t great vs. the Hawks.
My issue with the picking the Rangers is I am concerned Lundqvist can’t steal four games and part of me feels like he would need to do that for New York to actually beat the Kings.
Anze Kopitar.
Drew Doughty.
Jeff Carter.
Dustin Brown.
Marian Gaborik.
They have call done the job for L.A.
My take, they get it done here as well.
Kings in six. Bobby please start the proceedings and make yours.

Spezza decision

- May 13th, 2014

MONTREAL _ Just getting ready to head back Ottawa.
Always good to move around in the playoffs and get a chance to speak face-to-face with NHL types, especially when the team you cover isn’t in it and you get a chance to get perspective because you’re not quite as busy with the home team.
After spending four days in this city last week and the last couple of days before Game 6, I get the sense the Senators will have a big decision to make on Jason Spezza and they have to decide by the time he’s moved at the NHL entry draft exactly what he’s worth.
The Senators want:
- A player who can help right now. Preferably a top six forward. The Senators need someone who is hard to play against.
- A young prospect. Someone who may still be in junior is fine.
- A No. 1 pick. This is optics really. It’s not a great draft but it would look good if they got that top selection back. The Senators don’t have one because they sent it to the Anaheim Ducks for Bobby Ryan last summer.
Let’s make one thing clear: This doesn’t have much to do with the relationship between Paul MacLean and Spezza. Does MacLean love Spezza? Well, MacLean would have probably liked Spezza a heck of a lot more last season if the team was winning.
This is more about both sides decidiing to move on.
A change of scenery could be good for Spezza. The Senators may have decided a different face might help. He wanted to be the captain, they made him the captain and it didn’t work out very well.
“I just don’t think they’re going to get what they think he’s worth,” said a league executive before Monday’s Boston-Montreal game at the Bell Centre.
That’s where the dilemma is for Ottawa.
This guy is a point-a-game player. He attracts a lot of attention. Spezza, in some ways, has helped Kyle Turris be successful. Take Spezza out of the mix and you don’t have that anymore.
“It’s a tough spot to be in,” said the executive. “You don’t get Jason Spezza back in any deal.”
All this will make for an interesting next six weeks.

Round 2 Picks

- May 1st, 2014

I went 6-for-8 in Round 1. Not bad. Not great. I missed Colorado and I took San Jose. Those were wrong.
Here goes for Round 2.

Boston over Montreal in 5: The only way the Habs stand a chance is to make this one go long. They have to use their speed and try to kill the Bruins that way. Montreal cannot get involved in this one physically. I also like Tuukka Rask right now. I know Carey Price has been excellent. I go with Big Z and the Bee’s.

Pittsburgh over New York in 6: The Penguins had all kinds of issues during Round 1. That’s the way it was for them last spring against the Islanders as well. This one just looks like it will be a slam dunk for the Pens to me. I don’t know why. I guess I just like Henrik Lundqvist a little better than Fleury right now.

West

Chicago over Minnesota in 4: I think the Hawks make short work of Minny. The Wild don’t have a Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews. The Wild don’t have the goaltending. Corey Crawford deserves more respect. Minny might breathe a sigh of relief getting out of Round 1. Just the way I feel.

Anaheim over Los Angeles in 7: This could be epic. Love both these teams. They have great depth and might beat the heck out of each other. I just think Anaheim is ready to get it done. The big factor is Quick. He willed the Kings to victory in the last round. I don’t think there is any question about that.

I will add Don’s soon.

Don’s first pick was Bruins in 4. That’s the last text I received from him.
First, he said 5, then he changed in his mind and got into his Boston pajamas and called the sweep.

Got these from don before the Ranger game last night:
‘m also taking Rangers in six, primarily because of the goaltending. Sid keeps the Penguins around that long, probably.
The Kings are on a roll. And now so is Quick. LA over Anaheim in six
I’m taking Chicago to sweep the Wild.

Bobby could you make your picks please?

FIRST ROUND PICKS

- April 16th, 2014

EASTERN CONFERENCE

Boston over Detroit in 6: Tough test but I think the Wings can’t get it done. Boston will win in the end.

Pittsburgh over Columbus in 5: The Jackets are a nice story but they don’t have the talent to beat Pittsburgh.

Montreal over Tampa Bay in 6: This is Canada’s only hope. The Habs have Carey Price and Tampa is in tough.

Rangers over Philly in 6: Just not convinced the Flyers can beat New York in a six-game series.

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Colorado over Minnesota in 6: The Avs are the upstarts in these playoffs. Don’t think Minny can outscore them.

Chicago over St. Louis in 6: This will be an upset. The Blues lost six straight going into the playoffs. Not good.

San Jose over LA in 7: This has the potential to be the best first round series. I’d say stay up late. Could be good.

Anaheim over Dallas in 5: Nice story that the Stars made the playoffs. Don’t see Dallas going any further.

DON BRENNAN

When I made my picks in the paper, I was kinda caught off guard a bit. That explains why I have Anaheim and San Jose meeting in the Western Conference final. It can’t happen, duh.
I’m changing that to Anaheim-Chicago now … but here are my first round calls.
I hope they’re different than Bruce’s … but if it was a March Madness bracket, I’d want them to be the same as his.
Lightning does strike twice, and I’m talking about Garrioch winning college basketball pools, not Tampa.

Boston over Detroit in five.
-This actually might be a B’s sweep. Sorry Daniel Alfredsson, but while you may have signed with a team that’s better than Ottawa, you should have asked Boston to take you.

Columbus over Pittsburgh in seven
-I’m leaning with the better goaltending for the big first round upset. Along with “Bob”, the Jackets have a bunch of lunch pailers who just keep on working.

Montreal over Tampa in seven
-I’m not sure how this is going to work because if it goes the distance, those fans at the Tampa Bay Times Forum can be pretty rowdy. Seriously. Oh yeah, now I remember. Price will be the difference in Game 7.

Philadelphia over New York Rangers in five
-I’m starting to think the Flyers are this spring’s “sexy” playoff pick. So I might as well take them. I’m sexy.

Colorado over Minnesota in six
-Nobody won more games than Varlamov, and Patrick Roy will tell all those young Avalanchers a thing or two about the playoffs.

Chicago over St. Louis in four
-This is probably a dumb pick on a few different fronts. The Blues forgot how to score down the stretch, but they are still a pretty good squad. It’s also dopey of me to say they’ll be swept when, if memory serves me right, before the season started I picked them to win the Cup.

San Jose over Los Angeles in seven.
-This series will be worth staying up late for. Best matchup of the first round. At least four games go to overtime.

Anaheim over Dallas in five
-Not sure why, but I just don’t have a lot of faith in the Stars. And have Getzlaf and Perry not aged since the beat up the Senators in the 2007 finals?