## Silver Nuggets: How good do the Senators need Craig Anderson to be?

Craig Anderson is seen reaching for a better save percentage here. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Be_rad pointed out this article over at Pension Plan Puppets, where they looked at the save percentage a team requires to get approximately 90 points, or in other words, be in the hunt for the last playoff spot because of overtime losses. This is known as the win threshold. They estimate this by calculating the save percentage needed for a team to allow the same number of goals against as the amount they score. Assuming that the goals scored per game (2.80) and shots allowed per game (31.0) stay the same, the required save percentage can be calculated as:

Goals scored per game = Goals allowed per game = Shots allowed per game * (1 - Save percentage)
2.80 = 31.0 * (1 - Save percentage)
Save percentage = 1 - (2.80/31.0) = 0.9097

This is the 14th lowest save percentage required in the league and the 8th lowest in the eastern conference (lower is better). Craig Anderson is no where that, currently sitting at an .890 save percentage. As a team, the Senators have an .884 save percentage. One could argue that the Senators allow a higher rate of scoring chances per shot allowed compared to other teams, it might be true, but it's not known as a fact. However, Anderson's save percentage has to improve. As a comparison, Brian Elliott had an .890 save percentage for Ottawa last season. The Senators were expected to struggle to score, but that hasn't been a problem so far. If Ottawa can continue to score at their current rate, then even average goaltending might be enough to have them contending for a playoff spot, or at least have an even goal difference.

General Sens News

• Despite struggling in the last three games, the Senators still have have the number three power play in the NHL. It has what has kept the Senators in some games, because they have been badly outscored 5-on-5 and on the penalty kill. With a few days off before games, Paul MacLean will get the chance to reignite the man advantage. (Ottawa Citizen)
• Daniel Alfredsson skated for half an hour and didn't show any symptoms. Erik Karlsson thinks the Senators can play without Alfredsson, but are obviously better with him playing. Might not be too long until Alfie returns. (Senators ExtraOttawa Sun)
• Bobby Butler is struggling and when Paul MacLean struggled as a player, he started a fight. Thankfully, he doesn't expect Butler to do that. Also, Bruce Garrioch thinks Nikita Filatov needs to give more effort...right before quoting Paul MacLean saying that Filatov worked very hard. MacLean feels Filatov gets tense and isn't as creative with the puck in the NHL. (Ottawa Sun)
• Nikita Filatov isn't surprised to be back in Binghamton and enjoys being able to contribute down there. Kurt Kleinendorst emphasises that sending Filatov down is not a punishment. (Joy Lindsay)
• Zenon Konopka is disappointed that Wojtek Wolski won't play tomorrow night in Ottawa. (Ottawa Sun)
• Filip Kuba has quietly been one of the Senators best defencemen this season, but he hasn't gotten much recognition. He found it difficult to return from back surgery and then breaking his leg in training camp last year. He had a healthy summer this time around and has been playing well and logging big minutes. (Ottawa Citizen)
• Erik Karlsson is providing value in fantasy hockey even when he isn't scoring points. He had 15 shots in three games last week and his 51 total shots are tied for fourth overall in shots and first among defencemen. (Yahoo!)
• Jason Spezza is on pace to take 120 more face-offs this season than last year's league leader, Eric Staal. (Yahoo!)
• Jean-Gabriel Pageau has had an incredible start to the season, and is being used in all situations including the penalty kill. He is currently 17th in the league in points despite playing 10 less games than most players. (Hockey's Future)
• After Shane Price won OHL player of the week, Matt Puempel made it two in a row for Senators prospects. Puempel had four goals and two assists in three games. (Ottawa Citizen)
• Michael Traikos wonders if the Senators (and others) are second-guessing passing on Sean Couturier. Because you know, it's a race to the best first month. (National Post)
• Are the Senators being taken more seriously now by opponents? Nick Foligno thinks they are getting more attention after their win streak. (TSN)
• Erik Karlsson, like me, thinks the Senators could have won both of the last two games. Karlsson, along with Jason Spezza, are confident they can go back to winning the close games. Ottawa sports a 6-3-1 record in one-goal games. (Ottawa Senators)
• Karlsson also had his missing tooth fixed. (Ian Mendes)

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