Leilani

This puts their current salary expenditure at about 67.5 million with a 23 man roster. I expect they will roll with 22 for most of the year, which should put them around 1 million below their season budget of 68 million. This will allow them to add a player now, and/or to add a player later on in the season.

Which begs the question - now that they have Ceci locked up and are below budget, will they pursue another bottom pairing DMan? Borowiecki/Claesson/Kostka are not an ideal 6/7/8 crew - all should ideally be one spot lower on the depth chart. At the very least, I think we need to shore up that #7 spot with a more dependable player.

I feel like they should have stressed term.

Ceci will now expire and make money while the Sens still have Methot/Dion/Karlsson under contract (unless Methot gets snagged by Vegas). Up front they will still have Ryan, Brassard, MacArthur and Hoffman signed. They will be handing out new contracts to Stone, Turris and Ceci (as well as a goalie potentially) all at the same time.

But it's also a typical "prove it" contract for a player who has potential but hasn't really shined to this point in his career. Deals like this seem to be fairly common for that purpose rather than for the purpose of trading him.

It's possible it's changed under the new regime but Ceci is an Ottawa darling, he's local, played for the 67's and now he's on the Sens if there's one guy other than Karlsson they want to excel and keep in Ottawa long term it's probably Ceci.

Maybe someone like Matt Dumba is a contract made to trade not because they don't like him but because of expansion concerns and even then I think it was more of a traditional bridge deal than ground work for a trade.

I just hope it doesn't hurt them. They need to be as best as possible for Battles of Ontario in the playoffs.

Leilani

The 3D senator is a much better logo than anything else they have on the table. The "O" seems weak as an identifying logo.

Much prefer the centurion jerseys to any =0=. Granted, no one else in the league does horizontal bars like the O jerseys, but the centurion is immediately distinctive and iconic. Heritage jersey is dope, but it should be an alternate and the updates 2d Sens logo should be the Home/Away.

Fun fact I'm pretty sure the founder of the NY Rangers was nicknamed "Tex", so the team started being referred to as "Tex's Rangers" as a joke until it officially stuck.

And come on, what does a star have to do with Dallas? Texas baby.

All the other ones are good points.

Leilani

When you consider the overall scoring trend in the league it's just that much more impressive. What a player.

Also it's not like Ottawa is some sort of offensive juggernaut either.

We're 5th in the league in goals for. He's been on the ice for 109 goals forced this year (all situations). The Senators have scored 199 goals this year. That means he's on the ice for 54.7% of their goals for while only playing 48.5% of the minutes (at 29:07 TOI/g - obviously the word "only" in that last sentence is relative).

Take away the goals EK65 had the goal or primary assist on (let's pretend those second assists aren't as important) and we'd be 29th in the league, ahead of only New Jersey, and behind even the Toronto Marlies.

Let's pretend we replaced EK65 with another decent but not outstanding offensive defenseman, and that guy replaced 70% of Karlsson's on-ice production. (a generous amount, imo)

The senators would have scored 175 goals, tied with Columbus for the 22nd least in the league, and would probably have even more goals scored against us, as Karlsson despite the haters is pretty good in his zone.

We would have a GF/GA ratio of 0.80, the worst in the league, behind Edmonton (0.81), Toronto (0.81), Arizona (0.88), Calgary (0.88), and Buffalo (0.89).

In short, the Ottawa Senators are a lottery team with any other defenseman other than Erik Karlsson in that spot. That example is with a guy who creates 70% as much offense, so like a Kris Letang, for example....if you replaced Karlsson with like an average UFA signing like James Wisniewski for example, the Sens are likely a historically bad team this year.

People like to mention doughty for Norris, but if you swapped Doughty for Letang the kings would still be one of the leagues best teams. The Sens would be running away with the best lotto odds.

Leilani

Boston is always physically tough to play against, we can beat them but if we can avoid them its in our best interest.

Same thing with Toronto, things are always a battle with them regardless of whether one team is miles better than the other. Toronto's speed is difficult to play against for us. The rest of the division I'm not concerned about though. We also beat Columbus while they were in their peak this season, twice. Which is why I'd rather Columbus and then a home series in round 2 than a tor/fla/bos followed by a road series at mtl. But that's also assuming the Rangers snag 3rd in the metro which is far from guaranteed.

StillI I feel that two things are becoming clear based on the moves over the past 2 days:

  1. Management likely isn't jumping on Duchene (I, for one, am happy about this) unless a NHL forward is part of the deal going back. We now have 15 forwards if Lazar doesn't get traded. So I doubt we'll see a Ceci 1st prospect(s) trade.
  2. Neil may have played his last game. I mean, it's been clear for a while that he's being phased out of the line-up but with management now grabbing 3 bottom six RWs over the season, it'll be hard for Neil to crack the lineup. But I could be wrong, the team might want him to fulfill the punching bag role if we play MTL or TOR in the playoffs.
Leilani

How does the capital city of a country get forgotten so often? By all rights, Ottawa should be the de-facto capital of hockey, but they're barely mentioned as even being in the league, let alone the division.

The Senators are perfectly placed to be a bigger name in hockey.

Capital of Canada, right between Toronto and Montreal, in the playoffs for most of (current) franchise history, established playoff history against both Montreal and Toronto, but still forgotten! Yet, most people, especially young people, are Sens fans. It's been a generation now since the Sens were created, and the Alfie/Spezza/Hossa/Heatley years created a lot of fans. Last time the Sens were in the playoffs, it was a big thing, even though they didn't go very far.

It's not that they aren't competitive. They've been to a cup final more recently than either Toronto or Montreal. They're just....there, a team that, by all rights, should be a major player in the league, but gets mentioned less frequently than Winnipeg.

All the potential Ottawa fans already have allegiance to Montreal or Toronto, and those fans are so rabid that they won't easily change their allegiance.

If Ottawa can get a cup or two, or at least consistently put a competitive team on the ice and make a few deep playoff runs things might change, but I don't think they'll ever put a very big dent in the Habs or Leafs market.

Also Ottawa has a much smaller population than either of those two.

I think the perception that Ottawa is just a boring team with one star player is largely due to the lack of media coverage as well as a pretty horrible marketing team, like you touched on. Every commercial, highlight video or design, etc. is so generic and awful. Have you seen those beyond-ugly jersey patches they wanted to use last year? They need a major overhaul in the media department.

I'm also not a big fan of most of the local reporters who cover the Sens, but that's a separate issue.

Add all of this in to the fact that we're stuck betwen Toronto and Montreal, and you have a recipe for the forgotten Canadian team of the NHL.