Okay, so a sepia colored linen from the Medieval Ages that bears the image of Kyle Turris hasn’t been found but since arriving from the Phoenix Coyotes, the play of the skilled center has been nothing short of a miracle.
With another two point performance last night, the bane of Dave Tippett’s existence now has 4 goals and and 13 points since joining the Senators; pushing their record to 12-2-2 with him in the lineup. As discussed briefly wiith a few Leafs bloggers on Twitter, Turris has benefitted from some good fortune. There’s no question that we can attribute some of his success to line chemistry and the puck possession skills of Daniel Alfredsson and Erik Condra (Note: Alfie and Condra have the second and fifth highest relative corsi ratings on the team), however, Turris’ arrival has coincided with Craig Anderson’s hot streak. As a result, Ottawa goaltenders have had a .954 SV% when he’s on the ice at even strength; helping to explain why he has a ridiculous +/- rating of +13.
There is some concern that Ottawa’s on-ice shooting percentage is quite high (10.95%) when Turris is on the ice. (In other words, goaltenders have less than a .900 save percentage when he’s on the ice.) However, the fact that he is flanked by Alfredsson, a player who normally carries a higher on-ice shooting percentage should benefit Turris. It’s probably naive to assume that he can continue to post such a ridiculous +/- rating, but I don’t anticipate his offensive production rates to dipping that much.
A Passing Thought on the Second Power Play Unit
Over the course of the past summer, one of the things that Chris Neil wanted was an opportunity to play with the team’s best offensive talent on the team’s power play. With a new head coach that emphasized the simplicity of a power play that blended a high volume of shots with the net-front presence of players Tomas Holmstrom, Neil’s been given that chance.
To this point, Neil has accumulated almost 78 minutes of power play time, an average of 1:56 per game. Averaging the fifth most power play ice-time amongst forwards — trailing only Alfredsson, Spezza, Greening and Michalek — Neil has tallied 2 goals and 4 power play points. Interestingly, Behindthenet.ca shows that he’s only been on the ice for six power play goals total and conversely, he’s been on the ice for three shorthanded goals against.
I realize that there’s some sect of the fan base that needlessly bashes Neil and the role that he plays but I’m not one of those fans. I appreciate the leadership, the physicality, the modest offensive contributions and his ability to stick up for a teammate. However, I do have to question his utility on the second power play unit when clearly, the results just aren’t there. This isn’t some condemnation of the role that the net-front presence plays on MacLean’s power play, it’s just a concern that maybe there’s someone else on the team who has a better skillset and can fulfill this role while contributing elsewhere on the ice.***cough, cough*** Zack Smith or Nick Foligno ***cough, cough***
Anaheim Recalls Mark Bell
Mark Bell still plays hockey?
I’m shocked. Today it was announced the Anaheim Ducks that they have recalled the craptacular forward from the Syracuse Crunch. Will there be any lingering resentment from his hit on Daniel Alfredsson?
Probably not but in consideration of how much the media fanned the flames for the retribution on Rene Bourque’s hit on Nicklas Backstrom, I’m sure this story will get milked for all it’s worth.
Hockey Prospectus Top 50 Prospects Part Deux
Corey Pronman published the second half of his top 50 prospects (note: part one can be read here) and two Senators — Mark Stone and Jakob Silfverberg — made the cut. In addition to Mika Zibanejad (16th), Ottawa had three prospects on the list and only Minnesota (6), Detroit (5), Boston (4) and the Islanders (4) were more well represented.
Here’s what was said about Silfverberg (34th) and Stone (46th):
Silfverberg isn’t a standout player in any one aspect, but does a lot well as he has good skills, thinks the game at a desirable level and is a hard-working two-way player. He should be able to make an easy transition to the North American pro game next season.
No, Mark Stone is not ranked this highly because of the World Juniors. Ever since his explosion onto the scene last year, I have been keeping a close eye on Stone and actually was very optimistic about him after seeing Brandon last year, but scouting sources dampened my expectations. He’s a high-end thinker whose skating isn’t fine but is nevertheless improved; he can still set up and finish plays in bunches with a solid physical game.
More on Alfie’s Future
From ESPN’s Pierre Lebrun:
With the news this week that Martin Brodeur is learning towards playing another season, I approached Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson in the same vein.
Like Brodeur, I asked Alfredsson, would your team’s success this season spur on a decision to return for another year?
“I think I’ll wait for the offseason to make that decision,” Alfredsson said. “It’s more physical than mental. It’s about how my body holds up. So far, it’s been great. I’m having a lot of fun. But the toll it takes to play and the preparation it takes to get ready for another season, you have to consider that. But for sure the way we’ve been playing, I’ve been having a lot of fun.”
Alfredsson, 39, has certainly played like he can stick around. He’s already surpassed his point total from last season and there’s still half a season to play. I think his heart is telling him he wants to play another season. But he’s waiting for his body after the season to concur.
Another season of Alfie? Tits.
Regin Done For the Year
Missed this on Wednesday but Don Brennan is reporting that Peter Regin will be out for the remainder of the season.
“It looks like Peter is out for the season,” GM Bryan Murray said in Toronto Wednesday morning. “He hasn’t had surgery, but it looks like that’s what is happening here.”
It’s a tough break for a player who started off the season so well. As an impending RFA, there’s no question that he would have preferred to cash in on a productive season. Alas, it may work out well for the Senators. When healthy, he has an opportunity to be an effective player and in light of his recent injury, he should be very cost efficient.
Stephane Da Costa Recalled
According to Joy Lindsay (@PSBJoyOnTheSens), Stephane Da Costa was not practicing with the Binghamton Senators today and if last night’s injuries to Zack Smith and Kaspars Daugavins are serious, it’s likely that the Parisian born center has been recalled as an injury replacement. To add some more intrigue to the situation, Allen Panzeri (@allenpanzeri) is reporting that Smith and Daugavins are skating at practice today.
In 21 games for the Baby Sens, Da Costa has 9 goals and 10 assists.