The Ottawa Senators, who already looked like buyers, have been somewhat forced into a trading position.
The unfortunate injuries to Hoffman, Stone and Ryan have shown the fragility of the Sens squad. With Ryan expected to miss upwards of four weeks, the forward situation is bleak.
Stone and Hoffman may not be detrimental as previously thought. Stone has been diagnosed with a neck injury, as opposed to a concussion, which could have been season ending.
Hoffman suffered a groin injury but skated yesterday, albeit slowly.
It is believed that both may return this weekend, if this is the case, then no need to panic. Given the Sens triumph in Jersey is there need for wide scale panic?
It’s a though one, say Stone and Hoffman don’t come back as soon as expected, and the Sens start dropping points. This team is playoff ready, and the organisation seem to fully believe that, with funds being allocated for player pursuits.
What to do?
More from SenShot
- Crunch. Crush. Grind. Mash. The Tyler Kleven Story
- Belleville Senators: What To Expect In 2023-24
- Daniel Alfredsson and Marian Hossa Hit The Ice One Final Time
- Ottawa Senators: Something’s Got to Give
- Hot Pierre Summer 2.0? Let’s Talk About The Ottawa Senators Offseason So Far!
The rumour-mill has been stacked with Matt Duchene chatter. For the Sens, that price is way too high. However, with the injury crisis, will the management make a rash decision?
Given the weakness of this year’s draft class. Why not offer up the first round pick? The Sens, given they make the playoffs wont be in line to pick anyone of particular substance. Therefore, the pick could be used to sweeten a deal with a selling team.
Cody Ceci, first round pick and second round pick for Duchene. Unlikely to be enough, and depends on which prospects the Sens are willing to give up.
It is a confusing situation they find themselves. Not a fully fledged challenger (on the surface) and not necessarily a rebuilder either, given the experienced talent.
Question comes down to whether they really want to make a push this year, not impossible once in the playoffs to win a few rounds. Problem lies in either Pittsburgh or Washington out of the Metropolitan Division.
Do the Sens truly feel they have the firepower to upset either of those sides? If there’s enough to offer, then go all out. With a poor draft field this year, there is nothing to lose on that front.
White, Chabot and Brown could all feasibly make the team out of camp next year (Brown depends on fitness). They will feel like new signings, just like Mitch Marner has felt for the Maple Leafs this year.
Stick or twist
Therein lies the scenario. Go all out this year, grab yourself a Duchene and attack (or defend under Boucher) the playoffs. Win a few rounds, assess the situation, everything after that is gravy.
Whereas, settle down for the year, regardless of the injuries. Pray they come back healthy soon, and play the hand you’re dealt. Gaining some playoff experience. By that meaning that they have won more than one round in the playoffs once since 2006-07. In five attempts.
Ottawa have been mediocre in the playoffs since their ill-fated finals defeat ten years ago. With Boucher’s revamp of philosophy, is there a change of organisational philosophy. Put simply, this roster, with an addition or two, is capable of anything under Boucher.