Friday, April 6, 2007

Sens Regular Season Report Card

Heatley - A has really come into his own this season. His offensive production has remained consistent with last year, but he's shored up the defensive aspects of his game and, while he doesn't bring 100% 82 games of the season, his effort level has improved dramatically from last season. He isn't just a triggerman. He's the real deal, the whole package, blah blah. He's really stepped up to become "the man" this year and I have no issues with him getting the A when injuries hit and/or if/when the current leadership group moves on. I feel entirely comfortable with him on the PK, PP and at ES. I know he will take care of business on the backend and is always a scoring threat whether he's on the ice with Spezza, Kelly or Phillips. He is an upper-echelon elite player and there are only about 2.5 guys in the league I'd take over him.

Spezza - A he's also really come into his own. He's producing at one of the highest ppg paces in the entire league. He still needs to be more responsible defensively, and not make that unnecessary play, but he's only 23 years old and the improvement from last year to this year in regard to backchecking and turnovers tells me he's listening, he cares, and he's committed to improving. It hasn't happened overnight and it won't, but he is proving to be he wants to be a complete player. He is accountable and takes responsibility for his actions. He wants to be a leader for this team and stands up for himself and his teammates on and off the ice (in interviews). He will be a stud in the playoffs, maybe not this year, but he can be an Yzerman-type with some mentoring. Spezza's the key to Ottawa's offensive game and, in my opinion, our "pp quarterback". Add to all of this the fact that he's decided to finally shoot, he's got 32 goals (about 40 for a full healthy season). No complaints at all here.

Schubert A the man.

Kelly - A How can I possibly diss this guy after the season he's had? "Kelly's got hands of stone!" comes in a gets a career high in points. "Kelly playing with Heatley and Spezza/Alfie? HAHAHA" centres the most potent line in January, on the way to getting a career high in points. Murray puts him in any situation, with any linemates, with any expectations, and he delivers. He's our best PKer, perhaps our most versatile forward, and he's had an all around great season based on initial expectations. But if he doesn't get 40 and 60 next year he'll get an F. ;)

Alfie - B+ His slow start was unbecoming of a captain and atypical of Alfie, but he played a huge part in the turnaround of this team in January and basically pulled them from the wreckage along with Heatley. He's had another great season pointswise, he's one of our best pkers, he's the best forward 5-3. His rating is dragged down by a really, really poor start (he had like 1 goal for the first 20% off the season, and it was an empty netter).

Fisher - B Another guy who got off to a slow start, he's really turned it around and is a solid offensive contributor now. I think he has proven he can be the #2 centre for Alfie. I have never questioned his effort or intensity level, he brings his all night in and night out, things just weren't going his way early in the season. It is unfortunate Fisher missed another long stretch of the season but this is getting to be par for the course - still, he has a career high in points and goals, doesn't he? So at least he's getting great production even with injury.

Vermette - B Never really got the breakout I was hoping for. Performed pretty much the same as last year. Great on the PK, creative and all of that, but went through a rough goalless drought. Effort was there, success was not. I'm happy with his play but not blown away.

McAmmond B This guy could step up big come playoff time. Very versatile, fits in anywhere, good PKer, veteran, good stuff.

Comrie - B- Came in with a bang, fizzled, came back with a bang, fizzled, came back with a bang. This just seems to be who Comrie is. I am satisfied in that we got him for a bag of pucks, he filled a pressing immediate need, and he hasn't looked out of place here at any point. He's replaceable but I like his energy and creativity. It will be important to have this secondary guy in the playoffs now that we don't have Havlat. Comrie's half season was just good. Not great or terrible, just good.

Saprykin B- Not much to go on, but he doesn't look out of place in the lineup, brings lots of energy, and is clearly passionate and wants to perform well. Better than Arnason, that's about all I can say at this point.

Neil - C Very disappointed with his play this season, but a lot of it was being placed in situations he was not suited for. He comes out strong every year but fizzles too quickly. He's great in his job as an energy guy/agitator/enforcer, but he performed so poorly in other roles he was placed in I can't say this was a great season. Better luck next year. However, he does lead the league in hits and is one of the few aggressors who isn't overwhelmed by a regular roster spot.

Eaves - C not the season any of us were hoping for. He's only 22, he'll rebound. Bochenski might have had a better season...

McGrattan C I prefer him when he's a guy who can step in every few weeks for injuries or to take care of business. Don't like him so much when he's in the lineup on a day to day basis.

Schaefer - D+ Inconsistency dogged him. He's getting paid like a key secondary player, but throughout the first half of the season he was invisible or a problem. I haven't sensed he's given 100% outside of 3 or 4 games this season. He's had some nice batches of games here and there, especially when playing with Alfie and Fisher, but I am not satisfied with his season at all. I know he had injury issues but I expect much more from him next year.

(this is the part where I get tired of typing)

Volchenkov A+ the man.

Phillips A the man.

Preissing A- solid, stable, dependable etc.

Nycholat B looked competent in the one game. What more can be said.

Corvo C+ Had monumental struggles, taking those out I'd give him a [b]B[/b]. I think we've learnt our lesson, he's not a top pairing guy, but I think he could have a very good season next year now that he's settled in. I don't want him shipped out.

Redden C let's pretend 06-07 was a lockout season too.

Meszaros D ugh ugh ugh.

----
Emery B+ the man. Except for when it comes to shootouts, breakaways, and any odd-man scoring chance.

Gerber C Take out the first couple months and he's a B. Based on my initial expectations he's a D. Great backup, has becoming very dependable in the last few months. His mental game is just not there.

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