With Ryan Shannon’s announcement on Twitter last night that he was moving on from the Senators organization, I was pretty jazzed. Not because I have anything against Shannon as a person or as a player, but because of the terms of his new contract (1 year, $600k) suggest that the Senators organization would prefer to give Peter Regin an opportunity to be the team’s second line center rather than pay the league minimum for veteran stopgap player like Shannon.
Sure, barring: a) a trade; b) a strong performance from rookies like Stephane Da Costa or Mika Zibanejad; or c) a position change that moves Nick Foligno from the left side to center; Regin could face some internal competition for the second line pivot spot in training camp.
Granted, Regin endured quite the sophomore slump last season – dropping from 13 goals and 19 assists in 2009-10 to a paltry 3 goals and 14 assists in 55 games played. To put this into perspective, even Neil Brady’s 1992-93 numbers were more impressive.
The problems for him began in training camp – where he suffered under the weight of increased expectations that came from his impressive 2010 postseason performance against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Of course it didn’t help matters that Milan Michalek was penciled back in on a line with Jason Spezza or that Nick Foligno was had a Bochenski’esque preseason that featured a variety of highlight reel goals. Fans and the media alike quickly began to wonder when Regin would start contributing.
And contribute he didn’t. Regin’s disappointing camp landed him on Ottawa’s fourth line playing alongside Jesse Winchester and Shannon to start the season while Foligno played alongside Mike Fisher and Alexei Kovalev.
Eventually Cory Clouston tried to remedy the situation by shaking up his lines and moving Kovalev to Regin’s wing but that pairing had trouble putting up points. Looking past the fact that Kovy is renowned for being lazy, AK-27 is a dominant puck possession forward who loves to shoot the rock. And whether it was a lack of confidence or he was trying to hard to appease his linemate, too often it seemed like Regin was content to defer to his past-his-prime winger.
The good news is that Regin’s relative Corsi rating was decent despite his shots per game and shooting percentage statistics being down. Assuming he plays alongside a healthy Alfredsson and the shoulder injury that he sustained in the latter stages of the season has mended, he should have a fantastic opportunity to put up some points and recoup some value.
No Love For Winchester?
In light of the Zenon Konopka signing, I’ve found that a number of fans/Twitter followers/readers believe Jesse Winchester is expendable.
I suppose, in fairness to his critics, they’re right in the sense that most fourth line fodder is expendable. However, I can’t help but feel like Winchester’s somewhat underappreciated around the interwebs.
As an inexpensive fourth line center who averaged only 10 minutes and 50 seconds of ice-time, he brings: a physical element (101 hits); the ability to win faceoffs (a 55.6-percent success rate); and is solid along the boards.
And as much as it pains me to acknowledge, he’s a local guy… gah!
Earlier in the week, Ryan Keller and Ryan Potulny, Binghamton’s top two postseason scorers, left the organization as unrestricted free agents to sign with Edmonton and Washinton respectively. The exodus of veteran talent continued today when it was announced that Roman Wick will be returning to Europe after inking a 3-year contract with the Kloten Flyers.
Now that he has left and is destined to only come into the general public’s eye when he’s on the international stage for Switzerland, someone should preemptively start a 2014 Sochi Olympic Games thread on Hfboards.com that rips Bryan Murray and the Senators organization for allowing Wick to leave.
There were some additions to take note though. Veteran forward Mark Parrish signed a one year, two-way contract and should help alleviate the burden that many of Binghamton’s skilled forwards. And Twitter phenom Mike McKenna (@mikemckenna56) effectively ended the Barry Brust era in Bingo by signing on to be Robin Lehner’s understudy.