The Ottawa Senators arrived in Los Angeles, California yesterday afternoon in advance of Wednesday night’s game against the Kings.
The stop in Los Angeles marks the first of four on the road for the Sens in a trip that will see them also make stops in San Jose, Anaheim and Phoenix before finally returning to Ottawa for their home opener against the Devils on October 17th. It’s a tough stretch of games and one that will certainly test Paul MacLean’s team early in the 2013/2014 season.
Despite allowing what may have been one of the worst goals of all time, Jonathan Quick is still one of the best goalies in the NHL and the Kings are perennial powerhouse in the Western Conference. The Sens will certainly have to clean up some of the issues they had in Toronto on Saturday against a team like Los Angeles.
It’s going to be interesting to see what MacLean does with the lineup against these Western teams. On paper, there doesn’t appear to be a need for a guy like Matt Kassian on Wednesday but the Coach may think otherwise. Guys like Dan Carcillo and Kyle Clifford can fight but aren’t really in that “heavyweight” category. Think I’d prefer to see MacLean go with Da Costa tomorrow night.
The Sens are on the ice for practice at 4:30 PM.
- -In his 30 Thoughts this week, Elliotte Friedman mentions that there were at least four significant offers from teams looking to pry Bobby Ryan away from the Ducks. The Senators were able to get a deal done for a couple reasons, 1) They didn’t need to send salary back the other way and 2) They offered a first round pick. The fact that Bryan Murray didn’t need to send any salary the other way became a reality when Alfredsson signed his deal in Detroit.
- -I promise this blog won’t become an advanced stats hub but I do find myself paying closer attention to them this year. They’ll never provide all the answers and really don’t claim to but they do provide interesting ways to look at the game. One new site called Extra Skater is getting high praise from the analytics crowd and is worth checking out. You can find them on Twitter here.
- -I keep reading about the panic over a slow start from Bobby Ryan but I really haven’t seen it, from fans anyway. I know Shawn Simpson from TSN 1200 was all over him in the preseason but people seem pretty level headed other than that. The 6thSens wrote about this topic here suggesting that the “panic” is completely manufactured by the media and at this point, I tend to agree.