With a podcast to prep for on this Thursday afternoon, here's a consortium of links to satiate your appetite for Senators news:
Hockey Capital: After watching today's episode of Hockey Central featuring Ottawa's Assistant GM, Tim Murray, James Gordon chimed in with his thoughts on the unmitigated disaster that has been Pascal Leclaire's 2009-10 season and included this exchange between Tim Murray and Hockey Central's host Doug MacLean...(Ed. note: Thanks to Bruce Garrioch via Off the Posts, here's an audio link to the interview.
MacLean: "So, what the hell have you guys done to Pascal Leclaire?"
Murray: "It's been bad, Doug, right off the bat. I agree. I think we're all to blame...him, us, everybody. It's been terrible. It's been a terrible situation...
A terrible situation and a terrible cap hit. (Un?)Fortunately, a positive has come out of Leclaire's situation -- With more ice time, Brian Elliott's development at the NHL level has mirrored his play in the minors. He just keeps getting better with each progressive season.
Speaking of MacLean, he dropped a really weird comment in what otherwise was a very touching story on Espen Knutsen and Brittanie Cecil, the girl who passed away after being struck in the head by an errant puck.
"It was as bad as you could ever feel for someone and their family," MacLean said. "I didn't know Brittanie, but she sort of became a part of us. Nothing, including getting fired, could compare to what we went through with that."
I seriously hope that getting fired and immediately getting scooped up by a television network doesn't compare to the death of a Blue Jackets fan.
Ken Warren: In one of the Citizen's featured sports stories, Warren looks into Bryan Murray's philosophy that he needed a tougher team to compete in the playoffs and raises a lot of questions regarding how well suited this team is for playoff success. It's a good read and it should translate itself into a good interview because Warren will be our guest on the next episode of The 6th Sens Podcast.
Two wins have taken some of the pressure off, but many questions remain. Who will replace the offence lost by the knee injury to Milan Michalek? Will the weak power play ever produce? Will Alex Kovalev wake up from his post-Olympic slumber? Will Brian Elliott be able to maintain steady goaltending into the playoffs? Will a more physical Senators squad be able to compete against loaded offensive teams such as the Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins?
Don Brennan: Good ol' Don takes a gander at Ottawa's recent success against the Buffalo Sabres and champions Ottawa's penalty killing units. With a 7-point lead and two games in hand against the Senators, Ottawa needs to beat Buffalo to have any chance at staking any claim in the Northeast Division crown. Imagine that Ottawa could somehow cut the difference down to 1-point by their final April 10th game against the Sabres in Ottawa. You couldn't write a better script for the end of the regular season, not only would the fans be celebrating Alfie's 1000th game, home ice advantage would be at stake. It would make for a surreal atmosphere at SBP.
Sens Chirp & Ottawa's Consensus: Both respective blogs detail the cases for Andy Sutton vs Anton Volchenkov contract negotiations this summer. Speaking of Volchenkov, Eklund threw fiscal sanity out the window and forecasted a 5 year, 28 million dollar free agent signing with the Red Wings for the Senators' blueliner.
Five For Smiting: Bloguin brethren and a personal favorite of mine, FFS has nailed it in his most recent article. Never has Get the hell off my team, you fucking floater been so eloquently used.
Black Aces: Jeremy Milks examines the new intercounty baseball team has adopted the traditional civic colours of black and red, and seemingly upstaged the Senators by using a stylized "O "logo very reminiscent of the shoulder patches the Sens currently wear. The highlight of Milks' piece came in the comment thread where one reader compares the Fat Cats cats-eye logo to a vagina and Milks responded with the very brief, .....uh... I didn't want to say it... but...
I concur with the Black Aces take on the Senators uniforms. The current uniforms are ugly, bland and failed as a modern revision to what was otherwise a respectable logo. Why the organization didn't go with the image below, I'll never know.