Ottawa Senators Forwards Review: Ottawa is dealing with injuries to begin the season. Clark McArthur, Derrick Brassard, and Colin Smith are all dealing with injuries. Logan Brown and Alex Foremnton are getting 10 game auditions to see if they can make the jump from the OHL to the NHL. If either player doesn't have an impact early in the year, Ottawa can send them back to juniors without it affecting either players rookie contracts.
The Senators' first line with Mike Hoffman, Kyle Turris, and Mark Stone is completely healthy. That's their best line plus the second line with Jean-Gabriel Pageau a line 3 center and playing on the second line and Bobby Ryan, a former line 1 winger who got demoted to the second line makes every line outside of Ottawa's top line a huge question mark until players return from injuries.
Ottawa ranked 22nd in goals scored and 23rd on the power play in 2016-2017. The scary thing is Ottawa may regress in these categories to begin the season if their injuries cause their players to miss any time.
Ottawa Senators Defensive Lines
Ottawa Senators Defensemen Review Erik Karlsson had foot surgery. He's going to miss the first two weeks of the NHL Season and perhaps even more time. How long Karlsson is out will determine whether Ottawa can bounce back.
Ottawa ranked 10th in goals allowed and 22nd in penalty killing in 2016-2017. Those numbers could easily drop depending on how many games Karlsson misses. Once Karlsson returns this defense will pick right back up where they left from last year.
Draft Utopia Between The Pipes Goalie Tracker
Goals Against Average
Goals Against Average
Ottawa Senators Goaltender Review Craig Anderson had his best season in 2016-2017. He had to go through a tremendous ordeal with his wife battling breast cancer. He led Ottawa to the 2017 Eastern Conference Finals and now the breast cancer his wife had is now gone. Anderson deserved the Vezina Trophy over Sergei Bobrovsky, but you certainly cannot deny the impact that either Bobrovsky or Anderson had on their teams. Mike Condon showed he could be a great backup too.
I guess the Senators deserve some credit for dealing Robin Lehner to the Buffalo Sabres for a first round pick. Dealing Lehner for a second first round pick makes up for starting Anderson over Hammond.
Ottawa Senators Prospect Pool: Ottawa spent their 2017 first round pick on Waterloo Blackhawks center Shane Bowers. Bowers is going to be competing with Brady Tkachuk a 2018 first round pick for the line 1 center job at Boston Univiersity in 2017-2018. I'm interested to see if Bowers wins that competition since that will give Ottawa a better idea if Bowers can be the man moving forward.
Ottawa Senators 2017-2018 Prediction
The Senators are going to get off to a slow start with their injuries. They may end up being in last place in the first month of the season. They will get better as the season progresses though and eventually will find themselves in the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Ottawa is the final team in the Atlantic Division that I'm previewing for 2017-2018. Right now I have the Boston Bruins winning the Atlantic Division in 2017-2018 securing the top seed in the Eastern Conference. Montreal is right behind Boston due to Ottawa's early injuries, but I think Ottawa is third in that division during the regular season only to beat Montreal in the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs if their guys are healthy before losing to Boston this time around. Tampa Bay is the one team in this division that I can see making a run at a wild card as I have them in fourth. I have the Detroit Red Wings finishing fifth in this division, the Florida Panthers sixth, the Toronto Maple Leafs at 7, and the Buffalo Sabres at 8.
Boston, Montreal, and Ottawa are the top 3 teams in the Atlantic Division when fully healthy. Those three teams look like teams guaranteed to make the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs. After that, it's hard to tell what happens to be honest. I'm extremely curious to see if any of the other teams in the Atlantic Division can capitalize off of Ottawa's early season injuries and get off to a strong start in the Atlantic Division because we could easily see someone surprise us and jump into that top 3 with Ottawa's injuries, but I have no idea who that team will be to be honest.
Tampa Bay could easily sneak into the thick of things if Steven Stamkos remains healthy this season. I can see Detroit bouncing back if Michael Rasmussen makes the Red Wings final roster since the Red Wings got Daley from the Penguins to boost their defense in Free Agency same with the Florida Panthers if Owen Tippett makes their final roster as a rookie because they were active in Free Agency too and I really believe Aaron Ekblad their #1 overall pick in the 2014 NHL Draft is ready to be the man for that team with Jaromir Jagr gone.
Toronto got lucky last year. The Maple Leafs have an incredible offense and great goaltending. Their defense is a mess though and that's why I could easily see them stumble from the final wild card in the Eastern Conference to second worst team in the Atlantic Division until Timothy Liljegren makes the roster. If Toronto's defense improves they can be a top 3 team in the Eastern Conference, but for some reason my gut tells me they take a step back. Let's see what former Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock does this season before we jump to conclusions on Toronto being a one-year wonder. Babcock deserves a ton of credit for getting Toronto as far as they got last season.
Buffalo is the odd man out in the Atlantic Division. They have talented players, but I'm not sure if the defensive additions they made can get them into the playoff conversation. I still feel like they are a year away simply due to the new coaching hire. Sabres fans clearly deserve better then what they are experiencing right now. Jack Eichel is going to get Buffalo to the playoffs eventually, but when I see Buffalo, I still see one of the worst teams in the Eastern Conference with all the competition since both the Metropolitan and Atlantic Divisions are a lot tougher.
One more thing to add is that with Ottawa
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