Examining the Ottawa Senators

Sunday, 09.16.2007 / 10:00 AM / Season Preview

By Shawn P. Roarke - Senior Managing Editor

Complete Senators Analysis:
Intro | Goalies | Defense | Forwards
Feature | Numbers | Sked | Roster

Senators more than capable of a repeat performance

The Ottawa Senators have registered four-straight seasons with 100 or more points in the standings and capped that run of excellence in 2006-07 with a trip to the Stanley Cup Final, where they suffered a disappointing four-games-to-one loss to Anaheim.

So, was the Game 5 loss to the dominant Ducks in early June the end of the line for this team, which has been one of the elite teams during the past decade?

No way.

Ottawa remains a loaded team carried offensively by “The Big Three” of Dany Heatley, Jason Spezza and captain Daniel Alfredsson. That trio compiled 279 points during the regular season last year.

Defensively, Wade Redden, Chris Phillips and Anton Volchenkov carry the load, providing the impetus to Ottawa’s stingy defense, which allowed just 222 goals last season. Only two teams in the East allowed fewer.

In goal, Ray Emery has usurped Martin Gerber as the No. 1 and is well on his way to stardom.

The pieces are obviously there for Ottawa to make another run at both the Eastern Conference crown and another appearance in the Stanley Cup Final.

When all is said and done, depth and determination will likely be the defining factors for the Senators this season.

2006-07 Record:
48-25-9, 2nd Northeast

Who's In:
D Luke Richardson, F Niko Dimitrakos, F Shean Donovan F Justin Mapletoft

Who's Out:
F Serge Payer, F Mike Comrie, D Tom Preissing, F Pete Schaefer

2006-07 Leading Scorers:Dany Heatley (50-55-105), Jason Spezza (34-43-87), Daniel Alfredsson (29-58-87), Mike Fisher (22-26-48), Peter Schaefer (12-34-46)

2006-07 Goaltending Leaders:
Ray Emery 33-16-6, 2.47 GAA, 58 appearances, .918 save percentage, 5 shutouts; Martin Gerber 15-9-3, 2.78 GAA, 29 appearances, .906 save percentage, 1 shutouts's 2007-08 Senators Season Preview Package:
Intro | Goalies | Defense | Forwards | Feature | Numbers | Sked | Roster
Quote of the Day

It is really special. I had a lot of friends and family here tonight, and for my first [NHL] game in here it was great. I played here as an elementary-school player in the city championships and this was my first time back. It was a lot of fun..

— Toronto native Brandon Pirri after scoring 2 goals for Panthers in win at Maple Leafs on Thursday
AMP No Bull Moment of the Week