Friday Afternoon Tweetbag


On this Friday afternoon, I asked you readers to Tweet some questions for us to answer. If you’re not following us on Twitter, give The 6th Sens a follow @6thsens and check out my personal Twitter account @GraemeNichols.

Here are the questions…

From @EugeneMelnyk1: Did you notice the Frenchman’s faceoff stats from last night?

If you’re referring to Da Costa’s putrid 1 for 16 record last night, I’ve repressed memories of it. It now lies trapped somewhere in the depths of my mind alongside Radek Bonk’s rookie season and any of Troy Mallette’s fights. No, it wasn’t a banner night for many of the Senators in the faceoff dot however. Jesse Winchester won 1 of 6 and Zack Smith was 5 for 14. Only Jason Spezza (8 of 13) and Zenon Konopka (4 of 5) managed to post some impressive totals against an Oilers team that is ranked in the bottom third of league for faceoff success rates.

Don’t get me wrong though, obviously Da Costa’s 36.6% success rate is a concern considering he earns a significant amount of ice-time as the de facto second line center (he ranks third on the team in total faceoff draws). Fortunately though, Paul MacLean has obviously recognized this deficiency in Da Costa’s game and has used him accordingly. With his team leading 65.9% ozone start rate at even strength; even if Da Costa loses an offensive zone faceoff, the odds that this loss of puck possession will translate into a goal against are significantly less.

Fortunately, there is hope that Da Costa can improve and grow as a player. Typically, one’s faceoff success rate is something that improves as a player gains more experience at the NHL level and learns the tendencies of his opponents.

A rare double-shot from @DHSpeedwagon: why aren’t you the #1 Sens podcast? How is this quantified?

To vie the Senators #1 podcast crown, wouldn’t that actually necessitate recording some new podcast material?

The truth is we want to keep putting out podcast episodes. (By the way, thanks to anyone who has sent us an email and/or tweet asking us when we’ll start putting out episodes again.) Unfortunately, since Tim has moved to the Big Smoke, we have a bit of a logistical problem that prevents us from recording while in the same studio and then trying to conduct interviews with third party guests.

Anyways, I’m trying to think of some workarounds, including financing the purchase of our own podcast recording equipment to make things easier, but we’ll see what happens. Stay tuned…

And another @DHSpeedwagon question, “What does Filly do?”

Why he exerts effort maintaining his Formspring page; that’s what he does.

@SensDew19 asked “do you see Murray doing a trade soon, and if so who/for what?”

Since her question ties in with @SDale39’s question (“when Carkner comes back, which d-man comes out/what happens with Rundblad?”), I’ll try to answer both at once.

If reports are true that Carkner and Regin are still a ways from returning, the immediacy of making a trade to create room for either of these players is not there, yet. Nevertheless, once Carkner is cleared to play, the back end will be more clogged than the neutral zone when Tampa Bay shifts to their 1-3-1 system.  Fortunately, the injury bug has hit a number of teams so one would reasonably assume that there should be some kind of market for Ottawa’s excess in defensive. So the question becomes, ‘Who goes?’

Although David Rooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooondblad has been banished to the pressbox for the past few games and he has that two-way contract, I don’t think there’s any reason to suggest that he’d be the odd man out. History has taught us that Brian Lee will probably be the guy to get the shaft here. In fact, after Paul MacLean dropped his infamous “At this point in time, David Rundblad is the better player” line, I think a reasonable argument could be made that the Sens are using this opportunity to showcase Lee for the other 29 teams.

From a personal standpoint, if possible, I’d prefer to see the organization move Matt Carkner. Unlike a controllable player like Lee, Carkner’s headed towards UFA at the end of this season. It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense from an asset management perspective to hold onto a veteran who projects as a 6th or 7th defenceman, considering the organization has a physical defensive prospect like Mark Borowiecki who seems on the cusp of being NHL ready.

After a lengthy Twitter absence, @thejpiga wonders: Should we consider keeping Filly, or just let him… bonus points if you post this question/answer on his Formspring account

From @MathieuGauthier, does Filly do rebounds?

Filly don’t do rebounds.

@Menzim2 wants to know our thoughts on Sun writers skewering Filatov at the first opportunity. making it difficult for him to return #russiandidntstandachance.

I assume that you’re referring to today’s Bruce Garrioch article that features the headline ‘Filatov flaked out with the Jackets’…

First off, let me start out by stating that this sensitivity that fans have towards Filatov hasn’t only been directed towards writers from the Ottawa Sun. As James Gordon pointed out on Twitter the other night, “In years of covering this team, I have never dealt with so many oversensitive superfans than I have re: Filatov. Can’t say I understand it.”

To Garrioch’s credit, I saw him get roasted on Twitter the other day because he posted the relevant details as they broke concerning Filatov. Suffice it to say, many sports journalists have tons of shit thrown their way because they simply report things that people may not want to hear.

Now obviously there are some details from Filatov’s perspective that could be touched upon within the article that I pointed out above, but that doesn’t sell newspapers. For a player who was brought in to get a fresh start and hopefully establish himself as a NHL player, I’m sure the prospect of spending time in the AHL isn’t particularly alluring for Filatov. As Daniel Alfredsson mentioned on yesterday’s Healthy Scratches, if the decision were up to him and he could play close to friends and family while earning a few million overseas as opposed to the $65K that he would earn in the AHL, he’d probably do the same thing.

Technically, all we truly know from what’s been revealed by Bryan Murray and outside sources is that Filatov would prefer to return to Russia if it doesn’t appear likely that he’ll receive an opportunity to play in the NHL. In light of the recent comments made by Kurt Kleinendorst to Joy Lindsay, it doesn’t necessarily sound like Binghamton’s the happiest place to be right now.

Email of the Day: 

Under the subject heading, “Spez’s Line”, this one comes in from Ryan K.

I am now calling them ‘the Golden Palace line — best M-S-G in town!’ and i suggest you do the same!

Great site, top 2 on my blog roll…

Number two podcast. Number two blog. Number one in your hearts?