Senators ups and downs: Week 26

In a week where few Senators seemed interested in risking injury, Matt Gilroy played his best game in an Ottawa uniform.

(Ups and downs is a feature that looks at the individual performances of the Ottawa Senators during the past week.)

Three games and three losses in the final week of the regular season, but few people got to bent out of shape about it--most in the city were just jubilant about the Senators' surprising playoff berth. It's never good to enter the playoffs on a three-game losing streak, but it seemed like the team let their intensity lag once they'd clinched their playoff spot. Hopefully they can turn it back on for game one, or else the Sens will get worked by the Rangers.

Biggest gains: Matt Gilroy
In the first game of the week, Gilroy had a chance to show what he could do in the playoffs--and blew it. Then he drew back into the lineup in the season's final game, and definitely made his mark: He put up two points, and his speed and offensive support nearly gave Erik Karlsson a run for his money. Gilroy might not be in the lineup for Game One against the Rangers, but he definitely matches up better against New York than the Bruins.

Biggest losses: Erik Karlsson
It seemed like Karlsson might have been the most affected by the meaningless games--only one assist in the week--but considering how well he's been playing all season, that probably shouldn't be surprising. He showed an ability to dial it up in his first taste of the post-season, and the Senators will need him to follow suit this time around if they're to have any chance of making waves.

(read on for the full rundown...)

Goalies Trend Notes
Craig Anderson

Allowed five goals in two games played, but still made 60 saves. Anderson wasn't the problem last week.
Alex Auld

We might as well remove his name from the list now--he's not likely to see another minute of action this season.
Ben Bishop

Allowed three goals to the Bruins in his first game back from injury, but he seemed to settle down after a shaky start. There isn't much to worry about with Bishop, although Anderson's the unquestionable started heading into the playoffs.
Defensemen
Matt Carkner

Only played two games in the week, and was Carknerian: No points, 11 hits.
Jared Cowen

Pretty uneventful week for Cowen, although his stats line might be indicative of the problem with real-time stats in the NHL: Eight hits in two home games, none in one road game.
Sergei Gonchar

No points in two games and a minus-one ranking, despite ample powerplay time. He's a veteran who'll hopefully be ready for the playoffs, because the team needs him to step it up.
Matt Gilroy

See biggest gains.
Erik Karlsson

See biggest losses.
Filip Kuba

Kuba's actually playing a couple of minutes less than he'd become used to during the season, which might be a good thing heading into the playoffs. He had one assist in the week, and was mostly quiet.
Chris Phillips

Phillips had nearly eight minutes of powerplay time during the week. This does not compute.
Forwards
Daniel Alfredsson

Played in all three games this week, but conservatively: Just over 16 minutes in the penultimate and ultimate games of the season. Scored one assist.
Bobby Butler

Didn't draw into any games this week.
Erik Condra

Had a pretty assist on Jim O'Brien's goal this week, but not much to speak of elsewise--other than more penalty killing.
Kaspars Daugavins

Played a couple of games, and didn't play much except on the PK.
Nick Foligno

One assist in the week, but he'd set pretty high expectations last week--he didn't maintain his pace, unfortunately, and had just one assist.
Colin Greening

Also had just one assist in the week. Also didn't do very much.
Rob Klinkhammer

The Colonel was scratched in the first game this week, and didn't play much in the games he was in. He'll be among the players jockeying for spots in the team's bottom six, which is quite a fall considering the high spot he was in earlier.
Zenon Konopka

Hasn't played since March 23.
Milan Michalek

He was playing with speed, but didn't put up any points--if you want to find out why Ottawa lost every game last week, look no further than the lack of scoring from guys like Michalek.
Chris Neil

Brutal time to get injured, but it sounds like he should be good to go for the start of the playoffs, which is great news for the Senators.
Jim O'Brien

Jimbo scored his third of the season and was good in the faceoff dot as well as on the penalty kill. Those are useful skills for a bottom-line player to have; he's got the inside track on one of those spots.
Zack Smith

Currently mired in a five-game pointless drought, even though he had six shots during the week. He needs to be the offensive crux on Ottawa's third line, and he's failing that task.
Jason Spezza

Somehow came out of the week with two goals in three games, giving him 34 on the season and tying his career high. Considering he didn't have much support, he did well.
Kyle Turris

Just one assist in three games is a far cry from his high point last week. Will need to get going again in the playoffs.
Jesse Winchester

Winchester looks like a much more confident and well-rounded player than many of the others who play in Ottawa's bottom six, which is good to see--his calmness makes me a little bit calmer as I watch.
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