As Peter over at Silver Seven suggests, it’s the veterans such as Shean Donovan and/or Christoph Schubert that are fighting for a job on the lineup. Murray was quoted as saying that Peter Regin is ready for the NHL and has made Mike Fisher a scoring machine. That’s good enough for me to suggest Regin’s made the aquad, and the same goes for young stud Erik Karlsson, who had a nice game last night as well. Even though many are concerned about his defensive ability, I think he will do just fine if he keeps his head up.
SheaDo will reamin a Senator until his contract ends this year, as it is looking like. However, he won’t play much and expect him to a healthy scratch for most of the season, and maybe just a guy that Murray can use in the locker room. Chris Schubert is an interesting situation mainly because he’s been on the trading block for at least a year now and it’s starting to piss me off now. He needs to go, and it’s as simple as that. I liked him as a plugger during the 07 Cup Run but there isn’t room for him and his unwillingness to play forward crushes his chance of making the team. He’ll have to be sent to Binghamton, and maybe he’ll decide to go to Europe. YAY!
Chris Kelly will likely be traded. I can say that. Florida has contacted Ottawa about him but no other team is going to take his high-end salary. Kelly would probably attract some mid-round draft picks but that’s probably it.
If we all assume Karlsson has made the team, the battle for the 6th defenceman spot is between Carkner, Lee, and Picard, as Jared Cowen has been sent to the WHL’s Spokane Chiefs. Carkner’s got that nastiness going for him, even though he’s not a good puck mover. Lee’s got nothing going for him, but I suspect Murray might give him a chance. Picard played well in the 6-1 win over Montreal, he’s got a strong shot and good puck-moving abilities. Even though Carkner has that thing the Sens need, I would go in a different direction.
By this Saturday, I would expect Zack Smith, Christoph Schubert, Mike Brodeur, and one of Carkner/Lee/Picard to head to Binghamton. By the end of the month, the other one of C/L/P will head down. That’s how it’s working out for me.
Oh, glorious saint, here is now the final lineup I predict will be the one for October the 2nd in New York…
Michalek – Spezza – Alfredsson
Cheechoo – Shannon – Kovalev
Foligno – Regin – Fisher
Ruutu – Kelly – Neil
(Healthy Scratch: Donovan, Injured: Winchester)
Kuba – Karlsson
Phillips – Volchenkov
Picard – Campoli
Unfortunately, I would have to put Phillips and Volchenkov together because IMO they need to get seperated. However, 4 very good puck-moving defenseman and 2 very good defensive defenseman have spelt success in the past, and spell success now.