Senators by the Numbers: #41

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Tomas Malec D 2006-2007

Born in Skalica, Czechoslovakia in 1982, Malec was drafted 64th overall in 2001 by the Florida Panthers. He spent two seasons with the Rimouski Oceanic of the QMJHL. Malec was traded to the Carolina Hurricanes and made his NHL debut with the team. He was traded to Anaheim as part of the Hurricanes deal to acquire Martin Gerber. He joined the Sens for the 2005-06 season. He played parts of two seasons with the Sens, wearing #42 during his first year. He spent the majority of his time in the Senators organization with Binghamton. He was traded midway through the 2006-07 season to the New York Islanders for Matt Koalska. In 2007, he joined HC Ocelari Trinec of the Czech Extraliga. He is currently a member of HC Kometa Brno.

YEAR GP G A P +/- PIM
2006-2007 1 0 0 0 0 0

Alexander Nikulin C 2007-2008

Born in Perm, Soviet Union in 1985, Nikulin was drafted 122nd overall by the Ottawa Senators in 2004. Nikulin played three seasons with HC CSKA Moscow before making his NHL debut with the Sens in 2007. However, he spent the majority of his time in Binghamton. Frustrated with his slow progress in the Senators organization, he asked for a trade and was sent to the Phoenix for Drew Fata. In 2009, he returned to Russia and is currently a member of Sibir Novosibirsk of the KHL.

YEAR GP G A P +/- PIM
2007-2008 2 0 0 0 -2 0

Jonathan Cheechoo R 2009-2010

Born in Moose Factory, Ontario (like me!) in 1980, Cheechoo was drafted 29th overall by the San Jose Sharks in 1998. He spent three seasons with the Belleville Bulls of the OHL, helping the team win its first OHL championship in 1999. Cheechoo spent two seasons in the AHL before cracking the Sharks lineup in 2002-2003. He spent the first two seasons of his NHL career playing a bottom-six role; during his sophomore season, he recorded 47 points in 81 games. Cheechoo began the 2005-2006 season well; scoring 7 goals and 8 assists in 24 games. However, the acquisition of Bruins captain and superstar Joe Thornton two months into the season changed the fortunes of the Sharks: Cheechoo would add 78 points in the remaining 57 games. He finished the season with 56 goals, winning the Rocket Richard Trophy. The following season, playing on a line with Thornton and Milan Michalek, he recorded 37 goals. However, his goal totals dropped each of the following two seasons and the Senators were forced to take Cheechoo along with Milan Michalek in the Dany Heatley trade in 2009. Never the fastest player, injuries throughout his career had slowed him down and he never quite fit in Ottawa. In February, 2010, Cheechoo cleared waivers and was assigned to Bingo, making room for the recently acquired Matt Cullen. Recalled for the postseason, he played just one game in the first round series against the Penguins. On June 29, 2010 the Senators bought out the final year of his contract, ending his NHL career. He spent the next three seasons in the AHL, before singing with Medveščak Zagreb of the KHL for the 2013-2014 season, where he is currently among the league leaders in goals.

YEAR GP G A P +/- PIM
2009-2010 61 5 9 14 -13 20

Craig Anderson G 2010-2011, 2011-2012, 2012-2013, 2013-2014

Born in Park Ridge, Illinois in 1981, Anderson was drafted 77th overall by the Calgary Flames in 1999 after his first season of junior hockey with the Guelph Storm of the OHL. Andy played three seasons in Guelph, winning the OHL Goaltender of the Year in his final season. He failed to come to terms with the Flames on a contract and re-entered the draft. In 2001, he was selected 73rd overall by the Chicago Blackhawks. He made his NHL debut with the Hawks in 2002-2003. From 2001 until 2007, he would split time between the AHL and the NHL. In 2006, he was traded to the Florida Panthers. It was in Florida that he established himself as an NHL player, backing up Tomas Vokoun. A free agent in the summer of 2009, he signed a two-year contract with the Colorado Avalanche. For the first time in his NHL career, Andy was a starter and had a breakout season, playing 71 games (the most of his NHL career) and winning 38 times. He helped the surprising Avalanche make the playoffs and push the San Jose Sharks to 6 games in the first round. He earned his first playoff shutout by stopping 51 shots in a 1-0 Colorado victory. However, he struggled the following season on a bad Avs team and lost his starting job to Peter Budaj. On February 18, 2011 he was traded to the Ottawa Senators for struggling goaltender Brian Elliott in one of the most lopsided trades in Sens history. In his first start as a Senator, Anderson recorded a 47-save shutout against the rival Maple Leafs. His strong play early in his Sens career earned him a 4-year contract extension a month after the trade. His time in Ottawa has been hampered by two injuries: in 2012, he injured his right hand cooking and in 2013 he suffered a sprained ankle. In 2013, he set a regular-season save percentage record (.941 SV%).

YEAR GP W L OT SO GA SA SV% GAA MIN
2010-2011 18 11 5 1 2 36 589 .939 2.05 1,055
2011-2012 63 33 22 6 3 165 1,917 .914 2.84 3,492
2012-2013 24 12 9 2 3 40 677 .941 1.69 1,421
2013-2014 10 4 4 2 1 29 326 .911 3.16 551

Best #41: Craig Anderson

It's got to be Andy and it's not even close. Robin Lehner may be the goalie of the future, but Craig Anderson is quite simply the best goalie the Sens have ever had.

Worst #41: N/A

Malec and Nikulin barely had NHL careers and I'm not going to pick Cheechoo.

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