Tuesday, April 10, 2007

3 Senators' Make "Monster" Cut

3 Ottawa Senators were named "Monsters" by hockey analyst Pierre McGuire in season-end TSN special on Monday night. Monsters are players adjudged by McGuire to be "hard charging, abrasive, fearless" - essentially, the "consummate team player". Making the cut from the Ottawa Senators were:

Anton Volchenkov
Leads the league in blocked shots by a substantial margin, and is 12th in league hits. Constantly receives praise as one of Ottawa's hardest working players night in and night out (coincidentally, the other two "monsters" are recurringly receive similar praise). He's renowned around the league for his bone-crushing open-ice hits, but it's his willingness to sacrifice on even the smallest or most inconsequential play that makes him a note-worthy competitor.

Chris Neil
The league leader in hits, Neil is praised for his energy and effort. He's a great agitator and is recognised around the league as being one of the most adept tough guys - not just in his fighting skills, but in his all-around ability. He'll stand up for his teammates at any cost.

Mike Fisher
A "Monster" selection last year as well, Mike Fisher had another notable season. A Selke finalist in 05-06, Mike Fisher shone even more this season, finishing 17th in league hits (despite missing over a month with a knee injury), tying a career high in goals (22), and setting career highs in assists (26) and points (48) (again, despite missing significant time due to injury). Regarded league-wide as an premiere third-line centre, Fisher stepped up admirably into a second-line position, and even shone as a first line centre, albeit for a brief time, when Jason Spezza was injured. He is reputed for his tireless work ethic and leadership.

Anton Volchenkov and Chris Neil are first-time nominees; Sens captain Daniel Alfredsson was selected as a monster last year, as was former Sens beast Zdeno Chara.

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