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Game 28: Ottawa Senators @ New York Rangers

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Ottawa Senators
@ New York Rangers

Sunday, Dec 5, 2010, 5:00 PM EST
Madison Square Garden
Enemy: Blueshirt Banter

Complete Coverage >

Usually, our game day threads contain a little summary of how the Senators have been doing and a few players to watch. Today, there's one player that Senators fans will be paying particular attention to: Bobby Butler. Because of the eyes on Butler, the purpose of this game day thread will be a little different.

The purpose of this game thread is to ensure that you temper your expectations of Bobby Butler.

Butler is a good hockey player -- his AHL-leading 15 goals prove that -- but the NHL is a completely different ball game, and Butler has no points in the NHL. Many players have been very successful at the AHL level (Denis Hamel and Brandon Bochenski come to mind) without being able to actually translate that talent into production in the NHL. Chances are, whoever Butler replaces tonight would also be lighting up the AHL if they were down there.

The Ottawa Senators haven't scored in over 160 minutes, and a lot of that has to do with the team as a whole not creating scoring chances. If Bobby Butler is not placed in an environment where he has scoring chances, he's not going to score.

I hope that Butler gets a goal and helps to turn around the fortunes of an Ottawa Senators team that has been nothing short of a disaster lately, but I'm not going to hold my breath. You shouldn't, either, or else you're almost certainly going to be disappointed.

Pascal Leclaire starts in net (which means it's even less likely that Butler scores), while Peter Regin is a healthy scratch.

As always, join in on the fun in the comments before and after the puck drops, as we watch Bobby Butler rescue our season play his first NHL game of the season!