Monday night the Ottawa Senators suffered a 3-2 loss in a shootout to the Boston Bruins. Kyle Turris and Guillame Latendresse notched the two goals for the Sens, both coming in the first period. Guillame Latendresse suffered a whiplash injury in the 6th game of the season and came back to score his first goal on his first shift back. Turris also ended  a lengthy goalless drought. Bruins answered quickly, scoring one at the end of the first and another in the second. The Senators inevitably fell through in the shootout, but no one is talking about the outcome of the game as much as the Kaspars Daugavins shootout attempt.

As the fourth shooter, Kaspars Daugavins tried a move you don’t typically see. You can see it here. This move has thrown the hockey world into a frenzy, though, it’s not the first time he’s tried this. In an AHL preseason game playing with the Binghampton Senators (Ottawa’s farm team), he tried the exact same move. It worked out a little better, and even made national news then. You can see that shot here.

Talking heads throughout the league are pretty split on their opinion of it. One half saying it’s disrespectful to the game, and the other half saying it’s beneficial. My take on it is that the shootout itself is the only thing that should be called disrespectful. It’s a game of luck, not skill. You have a 50/50 chance of scoring. You could put out your defensive defenseman and he could still score. Daugavins did something everyone else is too afraid to do, he tried to make it more entertaining. He did exactly that, and I don’t see how people can call it disrespectful.

The shootout was implemented because the fans wanted to see a clear winner, and the league wanted it to be entertaining. Well, league, it’s not entertaining. The shootout sucks. There, I said it. The shootout is so ridiculous to have. I don’t see why they can’t play 4 on 4, then 3 on 3 until someone scores. Is there another team renting the ice out after the game?

I think if anything needs to be changed, it’s the way the tie-breaker is set up, not the way shooters shoot. All he did was attempt to make the game a little more interesting, and he certainly made my job easier, because I just wrote 400 words about it.

Though, his attempt to score failed, he made me respect him a lot more for trying to pull that.

He surprised a lot of people, with the coach of the Ottawa Senators, Paul MacLean quoted as saying, “my initial reaction when the stick went down was ‘buckle up’, because I didn’t know what was happening. But, then again, he’s Latvian so I rarely know what’s going on.”.

It certainly made a questionable tradition of deciding games through shootout a lot more exciting, so I commend you, K-Daug.

In other Senator news, the team finally got their heavyweight they’ve been looking for. On Tuesday afternoon, Bryan Murray and the boys pulled off a deal for Matt Kassian, not to be confused with Zack. Kassian has been in  the Wild organization for his whole career and was playing for the Houston Aeros, Wild affiliate, at the time of the trade.

The trade was a 6th round draft pick in 2014 in exchange for the 6’5, 205 pound heavyweight. The Sens have not had a bonafide fighter since Zenon Konopka and Matt Carkner both left via free agency last summer. It could be argued that Neil is that heavyweight player, and this trade was unnecessary, but it’s tough for one man to handle the job all the time. In the two previous games we have seen Patrick Weircioch and Chris Phillips both drop the gloves. I don’t think we’ll be seeing that happen anymore. During last years home opener for the Sens, Kassian fought Zenon Konopka. Click here for video of that fight.

Not only will Kassian be a fighter, but just having him in the lineup will make any potential combatants think twice before making a dirty hit. In an interview yesterday.

In an interview yesterday Matt Kassian was noted as saying,

 I’m going to be a very physical player, a very tough presence, I’m going to be a little bit of human HGH and make the guys grow a couple of inches out there. You want your players to play confident and feel comfortable out there in a very physical division that’s in a very physical conference. You want to bring that element of physicality and toughness and grit and that’s what I’m going to bring.

Kassian went through waiver earlier this season and some have been asking why the Sens didn’t pick him up then. The reason they didn’t is because of a blip in the CBA that says if they had picked him up he would have just went through waivers regardless, and could have been once again picked up, so trading him was the better option so he could start off with the big club. He is not expected to make his debut Wednesday vs. Montreal, but rather Saturday vs. the Sabres.

I’m hopeful for a Jon Scott – Matt Kassian tilt. As any good hockey fan would be.

Now, to adress the trade rumors. Let’s get it out of the way. These are the rumored players – Alfie, Gonchar

Do I think either of these players will be traded? No. Here’s why.

Daniel Alfredsson – longest serving captain currently in the NHL, spent his whole career in Ottawa, leading scorer this season for the Sens, team backbone, face of the franchise, and most of all, the team is currently in playoff contention.

Let’s just pretend for a minute that Alfie was going to get traded. There are a few destinations being thrown around. The obvious ones are Boston, Chicago and Vancouver.

Vancouver has a history of targeting players at the end of their careers to give them a last chance at the Cup. Most notably, fellow Swede, Mats Sundin. I think that if Alfie had to choose, his destination would be Vancouver. He’d potentially be playing with the Twins.

Chicago and Boston are lesser possibilities. It’s been made clear that management is not going to move him unless he has specifically asked for a trade, and with the deadline just weeks away, if he hasn’t by now I doubt he does at all. Also, if Alfie has asked for a trade he gets to basically choose where he goes and I don’t think he’d want to go to a division rival such as the Bruins.

If I had to choose where Alfie would go, I’d pick Chicago. For 3 reasons, 1) best chance at a cup 2) not divisional rival 3) they’re not Vancouver. I don’t think that last one is a reason, but I whatever.

In wrap up, I find it highly unlikely Alfie ever plays for a team not based out of Ottawa. Even when he’s old, his beer league team will be based out of Ottawa, but I guess it’s fun for media to speculate.

Sergei Gonchar is another name being thrown around, God knows why. It’s so obvious the Sens can not trade this player. With Erik Karlsson out for the entire duration of the season he is the only offensive defenseman the Senators have. Trading him would be a pretty moronic move in my opinion. Sergei Gonchar is one of the most underrated players in the franchise and I think it’s even pretty possible he get’s resigned to a one year deal this off-season.

If he were to get traded, I think the name most people are tossing around is the Pittsburgh Penguins. They’re always looking to add that final piece for a Cup run, and Gonchar has close ties with them. Malkin would also probably love it. When Malkin came to North America from Russia, Sergei took him under his wing and showed him the roped. It has been said that Malkin looks up to Gonchar almost as a father figure.  I also doubt this deal happens because of the current situation the Sens are in.

I think Sens fans should gear up for another boring trade deadline. Maybe one or two more deals are in the works, but for nothing huge. You have to remember that this is a youth movement, and that’s a good thing. Developing players now will be huge for the future.

Since so much has happened since my last post, I can only speculate that even more is in store for the coming weeks, especially with the deadline looming. If there is anymore Alfie news, we’ll be hearing about it in the coming days. I look forward to bringing all of their news to straight to you.

 

Cheers,

Mack

   
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