Are the Sens going to really be that good?

Discussion in 'Ottawa Senators' started by Stylizer1, Oct 23, 2013.

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  1. Stylizer1

    Stylizer1 HatTrick Swayze

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    With all of the hoopla over how much depth we have in the organization and the fact most of our picks have been in the mid range over the last 5-10 seasons, are we in a position to be one of those teams who are good enough to make the playoffs but not good enough to win the cup?

    Safe to say we don't have any superstar talent in the A or in the juniors, or at least no one who has stuck out.

    We have a good core of players but will still rely on free agency or a trade to make this team a true contender.

    Since 98 we have had a pretty good team making it to the conference finals and the cup finals. Due to all of our success we have missed out on a lot of high end talent because of it. Karlsson was a diamond in the ruff as well as Lehner. Thanks to great scouting we were able to steal those players.

    As it stands we have Ryan, Turris, Michalek, MacArthur, and Anderson all via free agency/trades. In goal we should be fine for the future but there is no assurances that Michalek, Ryan, or MacArthur resign with us and must go out again to find top 6 replacements.

    Looking at teams like SJ, ANA, LA, show where we need to be in order to have a chance to win the cup. The only teams in the east that can match that type of play are Boston and Pittsburgh and to a lesser extent Detroit.

    Do we have enough talent in the pipeline in the next few years to become better than we are right now? I don't see it.
     
  2. Minister of Offence

    Minister of Offence Registered User

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    Are we closer to the cap floor or to the cap?

    Changes everything.
     
  3. SenzZen

    SenzZen Now Let's See

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    Who has superstar talent in the A or Juniors?

    Maybe Drouin with Tampa.

    Maybe.
     
  4. Nac Mac Feegle

    Nac Mac Feegle wee & free

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    Well, I don't see any of our guys in Bingo or junior ever becoming solid first liners/pairings in the NHL. But, I am no scout. Anyone can draft the consensus next best guy on the list...it's the successful organizations to spend time and resources in proper development.

    An organization like Detroit does this better than anyone. No superstars (or even stars) in the pipeline, but good-solid development into making decent all-around players. (Of course, one hell of a lot of luck came into getting some of the less heralded European players back in the day in later rounds.)

    When you do that, it's simply a matter of filling in the minor gaps via trades and free agency.
     
  5. Zillaege

    Zillaege Registered User

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    Zibanejad and Lazar have shown star potential so far. And we already have 4 star players on the roster, between Spezza, Ryan, Karlsson and Anderson. In fact, it's been the efforts of our star players that have kept us afloat this season, it's our depth that has been the most disappointing.
     
  6. Tampacuseforever

    Tampacuseforever Registered User

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    You can add Lehner to the list.
     
  7. sens4life

    sens4life Registered User

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    It didn't last year.
     
  8. Qward

    Qward Because! That's why!

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    Blow it up.
    [​IMG]
     
  9. QuietOnTheFront

    QuietOnTheFront @QuietOnTheFront

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    You listed 3 teams that have had similar success over the last decade as ourselves. Anaheim and San Jose in particular have not benefited from building up lottery picks and perennial high draft positions. They've both made timely trades / FA signings to fortify their teams and drafted well with their mediocre draft positions. That's the same thing we're doing/trying to do.

    I think our case we just need to be patient and wait for this "new" team to gel. A lot has changed over the summer and I'm hoping that this is just an adjustment period.

    Hopefully Zibanejad coming back tonight brings us closer to what we were last year.
     
  10. Very Stable Genius

    Very Stable Genius #WeLostOurKarlssons

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    I'm worried about our bottom 6 depth, its gone from being a strength to getting hemmed in every shift. Good teams need their bottom 6 to forecheck hard, ours is the opposite.
     
  11. TheSenator

    TheSenator The other guys

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    We should be able to take a lot from our next 4 vs. Detroit, Anaheim, San Jose and Chicago.

    Detroits 2nd in the division and they've beaten Boston and Colorado.(Who knew that'd be a mentionable accomplishment this year.:laugh:) Plus we get to see how the team fares vs. Alfie, which will be interesting.

    Anaheim and San Jose are chances to redeem our reputation. I'm sure there were a lot of damaged ego's in the dressing room following those two losses. Especially considering how much hype there was around the team going into the season.

    And the game vs. Chicago will be a chance to see how the team will deal with the stigma that comes with playing the defending champs. It doesnt really help that we didnt play them at all last year either.

    I'll be keeping my fingers crossed for at least 3-4 points lol

    We barely made the play-offs and got schooled in the second round by a team that in turn got swept.

    Our financial shortcomings were far from invisible last year, but we were in the third year of a 'rebuild' so it was excusable. Pretending to have an equally competitive roster while at a financial handicap is ignorant.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2013
  12. Super Cake

    Super Cake Registered User

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    We should tank for Mcdavid. ;)
     
  13. PoutineSp00nZ

    PoutineSp00nZ Electricity is really just organized lightning.

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    If the Sens have any chance at winning a cup they are going to have to bring in a couple of high profile free agents. Most, if not every team that wins a championship uses free agency to help round out it's roster, and most spend to the cap.
     
  14. YNWA14

    YNWA14 You'll Never Walk Alone

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    I really like Lazar's chances at becoming a star in this league. He has the drive, the tools and the talent to do it. We have a few other players with fringe chances but are more likely to just be good players (Zibanejad, Ceci, Prince, Pageau, Conacher), but it helps that we already have guys on the team that can do it (Karlsson, Ryan, Spezza, Turris, Lehner). It's a young core that is already better than most and easy to build around.

    Well, as mentioned before...

    Lazar, Zibanejad, Ceci, Prince, Pageau, Puempel, Stone, Claesson, Wikstrand are all solid prospects with a good chance of being NHL players.

    I would say down the line if you consider in the next 2 - 3 years our 'core' will be Spezza, Karlsson, Ryan, Turris, Conacher, Greening/Smith, Methot, Cowen and Wiercioch. I think we could be looking at something like this:

    Puempel - Spezza - Lazar
    Prince - Turris - Ryan
    Conacher - Zibanejad - Stone
    Greening/Smith - Grant - ??? (Robinson?)

    Methot - Karlsson
    Cowen - Ceci
    Claesson - Wiercioch

    Lehner
    ??? (Driedger?)

    Assuming the prospects develop 'as expected' to me that looks like a better team than what we are icing now by a fair margin. Of course teams rarely progress this way and having that many homegrown players is unlikely, but you get the point. I see nowhere for this organization to go but up in the forseeable future.
     
  15. newtron

    newtron Registered User

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    There are many factors in play.

    Looking at the forwards, if Uncle Euge opens his wallet (or gets an investor/partial owner...) and we can keep Spezza, Ryan and we keep Turris and Conacher around, and hang on to either MacArthur or Michalek or both and a couple of the following turn out to be good or very good top 9 forwards - Z-BAD, Stone, Puempel, Prince, Lazar, Pageau... then we can be a very good team up front. Not worried about the complimentary 3rd line and 4th line guys as we've got Condra, Greening, Neil, Smith and a bunch of guys ready to take a crack at a big league role (Grant, Hoffman, Robinson, Petersson, (I think JOB and DaCosta have had their last chance in OTT)

    On D, we've got Karlsson (great) and Methot (very good and very steady). If improvements can be made by Cowen and Weircioch, and to a greater extent Ceci and one of Gryba, Boro, Sdao can evolve into a very good defensive d-man, and another guy can evolve into a solid bottom six: Wideman, Claesson, or Wikstrand, then our d looks pretty nice going forward

    We're good in goal... still sounds weird to say.

    With forwards and d-men, that's a lot of 'ifs'... but is still possible.
     
  16. ChocolateLeclaire

    ChocolateLeclaire Registered User

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    Not true. Look at all the recent "high profile" signings and ask yourself what they've done for the team that opened the bank.

    Brad Richards - should be a compliance buyout, Rangers had a small window and didn't even make it to the Finals.

    Ilya Kovalchuk - props to the Devils for locking him up. He got them a trip to the Finals. Now he's retired and he's going to cost them a lottery pick.

    Jay Bouwmeester - Calgary busted the bank for him. Got them nowhere.

    Ilya Bryzgalov - LOLOLOL

    David Clarkson - RIDICULOUSLY overpaid.

    Ottawa opened the vault once to sign Gonchar. He helped the team but didn't get us close to the Cup.

    This whole "we're a cap floor team so we can't be competitive" theory is stupid. We have yet to be in a position where we need to spend to the cap to make our team better. Anyone who makes this complaint still refuses to answer who we could have signed during free agency that we needed as a team. Alfredsson was not a money issue, that was something different. Other than that, the crop was weak and we managed to get a decent player in Macarthur.

    Free agency as it stands is just a place to fill out a roster. The top players on every team aren't making it to free agency anymore so what you're left with is roster depth and guys past their prime.

    Even next year's class isn't good. Ryan Miller? Thomas Vanek? The Sedins? Joe Thornton? Good chance none of those guys make it to FA before signing or being traded then signing with the team they signed with.
     
  17. PoutineSp00nZ

    PoutineSp00nZ Electricity is really just organized lightning.

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    It is next to impossible to forge a championship team through the draft alone. A team is going to have to sign free agents or make trades that sacrifice the future for the chance at a run. The best teams don't build through free agency, they use it to plug holes and improve areas of weakness. That is what im suggesting that the Sens need to do.

    The Hawks had Hossa, the bruins had Chara and Recchi, LA brought in Gagne the list goes on and on.

    You can point out all the free agents that didn't help a team win a cup, but im not sure how much validity that tactic has seeing as most teams bring in a free agent of some kind and only one wins a cup every year.

    The Sens can be competitive while being on a budget, but are they going to win cup? Unless they open up the bank and bring in another high end piece or two probably not. Free agency is just a cheap way to do that.
     
  18. DG

    DG Registered User

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    Most teams are like this though... even good ones.

    Pittsburgh and Chicago for example have the approach of "pay our core players a ton of money and hope that we can fill out the roster with veterans on good contracts and develop some good, young, cheap players"... IF[/]b we can, we contend. IF NOT we don't.

    But that's recent... before it was if we can keep Malkin, Crosby, Letang and Neal (or Toews, Kane, Keith and Crawford) long-term...

    Obviously those teams are in a bit better shape (especially the one with two of the best players in the world), but whether a team is good enough to contend still varies year to year and there are lot of unanswered questions with tons of ifs...
     
  19. ChocolateLeclaire

    ChocolateLeclaire Registered User

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    You specifically said high-profile free agents. Chara was a cap casuality of Ottawa and would have never gone to free agency if Melynk could have kept him and Redden. Hossa, though a very well-rounded player, has a very bad contract. He was a piece of the Hawk's cup run but very much a complimentary player to Toews, Kane, Keith, and Seabrook. The Hossa signing by Tallon meant they had to lose key guys like Byfuglien and Ladd. Only after having some of their homegrown talent rise did that contract not hurt. Gagne was not a high profile, high salary signing, just a solid piece to the Richards,Carter, Kopitar, Doughty, Quick core that LA built.

    My point is the Sens don't have to break the bank to sign players, they have to sign the right free agents. Of course you don't build a team through drafting or free agency alone. But the great teams sign players that compliment the stars they've developed. Teams that feel that they can get the biggest piece from free agency usually fail.

    To me, the Macarthur signing is the right type of signing this team has to make.
     
  20. supsens

    supsens Registered User

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    Hossa? 4 finals in 6 years, I think he adds a little more then you give him credit for, the fist cup they won he was the only guy to show up in the first 2 games of the final and he kept his team in it, without him they were down 2 games to none.
    The 5.2 cap hit has hardly been a bad contract. One of the main reasons they lost key guys is because a clerical error made them over pay for players on the roster that they should have signed as rfa's cheap.
     
  21. SixthSens

    SixthSens RIP Fugu

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    Not to go too OT here, but it's funny seeing Bobby Ryan's AAV at 5.1/yr while Clarkson is 5.25/yr. I know Bobby is going to get paid on his next contract but it's still funny to see.
     
  22. Bean Drown

    Bean Drown Registered User

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    I agree. I don't see it either. We are a good team and have the talent to be above the middle of the pack, however I don't see us being close to a cup contender. We are a team that will get into the playoffs, do some damage for a round or two, and then get blown out by a real contender. I think we have been fooled a little bit by some early successes in a rebuild.

    That's not to say I wish we were spending more money, taking one look at the free agents last year makes me happy we stayed away from those ridiculous contracts. I'm also happy we didn't sign Gonchar and Alfie to a combined 13 million a year. This team is a good 3-4 years off from MAYBE being a legit contender in my eyes. Maybe by then there will be some legit FA's we could make a pitch for.
     
  23. InAbsensia

    InAbsensia OMG Boro is going to be our captain isn't he?

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    Well, we're probably going to need a few things:

    1)Regardless of players on the team, a complete buy-in on two-way play. That means it doesn't matter if you're Jason Spezza or Zach Smith, you get on that loose puck and you strip it away from your opponent and you high-tail it back to your end if needed. I have my own doubts that our first line can do this, they've given up a ton of possession to their opponents early on.

    2)Need a lot more skill and speed. However Murray gets this, we can't have slow or average speed playes on the team anymore dragging it down while opposing forwards zip around unconcested. Faster forwards means the opposition takes penalties interfering on our players. Faster defence means quicker to react to incoming rushes, faster, crisper passes (hockey IQ helps here as well) and less hooking/interference all around.

    3)Expectations. There haven't been any in about four or five years. This year they've gone up because of the second round last year but management has still been very, very cautious. Murray has said they could be a contender but hasn't gone further than that. Melnyk has said basically "Wait until December". Without pressure and expectations you atrophy, you don't have goals so you just stay middling and static and die.

    4)Spending. It's going to happen whehter or not The Euge wants it to. So he can either pony up in two years or he can just make this a glorified AHL team. If he can't pony up he needs to sell or get a partner; contrary to Eugene's mad ravings, Canadians have popped up to share ownership of teams recently. Local guy in mix for Coyotes, True North for Jets...there's money in this country and around Ottawa if Eugene can bear to have a partner.
     
  24. ReginKarlssonLehner

    ReginKarlssonLehner Let's Win It All

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    NOW:

    Centers:

    Spezza, Turris, Smith, Zibanejad, Pageau, Grant,

    Wingers:

    Ryan, Michalek, Conacher, MacArthur, Greening, Neil, Condra

    Defenders:

    Karlsson, Methot, Wiercioch, Cowen, Gryba, Phillips, Corvo

    Goalies:

    Lehner, Anderson

    Analysis:

    Young team. Defense does not have much experience but has great potential. Centers are elite. Wingers after Ryan are weak or complementary at best.

    Top Prospects in position to take over roles:

    Center:

    Lazar, Da Costa, Dunn

    Wingers:

    Stone, Prince, Puempel, Puempel

    Defenders:

    Wikstrand, Ceci, Claesson, Boro

    Goalies:

    Unknown, hard to predict.

    Analysis: Center is weak but very high promise in Lazar. However, NHL team has excellent center depth with good young promising centers so no worries. Some potential solid top 6 wingers in system and that's good news cause it's what Ottawa lacks most right now. Defenders: Good mix of complementary top 4 defenders which should help Ottawa build around after their top 4 in NHL now which is already young and promising. Goalies: w/e

    CAP SPACE: Plentiful

    Bottom line:

    Ottawa is majorly set in all positions heading forward but what they require most is not help from juniors and AHL team but development of players already in NHL(Cowen, Wiercioch, Zibanejad, Pageau, Turris, Smith, Gryba, Conacher, Lehner)

    The extra cap can be distilled in positions of need that we are missing(1 more elite winger or top 2 defender)

    Therefore: Ottawa is in excellent shape moving forward.
     
  25. mcnorth

    mcnorth Registered User

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    Top six needs to stay healthy and meet expectations. Doesn't even need to be better than they are - just be present and be our best players.

    Our bottom six is where we need to get better and what worries me about when we look at the pipeline is do we have the guys there to improve the team by providing/replacing the current bottom six. We need to replace Neil, we need to upgrade Smith, upgrade Kassian or abandon the heavyweight position altogether, upgrade Greening, upgrade Condra...

    When I look at the team and prospects I really see the opportunity for a solid third line. We're at our best when we've got that third line going, a line that can shut down, or hem in, or chip in a few, and win face-offs. Some nights we have it, and with a variety of combinations, but if we could ever find a consistent group there that didn't result in a poor fourth line (a big issue is how poor Smith and Neil are together - it would be great for the franchise if we could allow Smith to play LW on the third line) we could really have something. But the bottom six needs to be better to go anywhere. Or at least needs to get silly hot at the right time ala Chicago last year or Anaheim a few yrs ago.
     

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