It’s that time of year again. The regular season is nearing it’s close, and the cutoff for the playoffs is pretty much decided. Sitting at around 99% odds from most prediction models, the Sens have rounded third and are heading for home to clinch that coveted playoff spot.
Last week saw Ottawa take four of a possible six points, beating the Bruins and Penguins in tight one-goal games, and losing to the Habs for the third time in eight days by a score of 3-1. We’re still only three points back with a game in hand, so first place isn’t out of the question just yet.
Biggest Gains: Mike Hoffman
Hoffman’s been on a tear lately, improving his point streak to six games. His power play snipe against Pittsburgh was gorgeous, and just for fun, he added another three assists on the week. His skill set has been on full display recently, and boy is he fun to watch.
Biggest Losses: Tommy Wingels
I hate to be giving the trade acquisition biggest losses, but Wingels looks to be forcing himself out of the lineup. He has a lone point in his last nine games, he’s been abysmal on possession (27.78 CF% this week), and unlike Chris Kelly, he hasn’t been playing on the penalty kill. With Mark Stone back and Viktor Stalberg close, it looks like he’ll be serving as an extra body for the playoffs.
|Craig Anderson||━||When .917 SV% is considered a below-average week, you know you're in good hands. Can't really blame him for any of the goals against Montreal.|
|Mike Condon||▲||Another stellar performance, stopping 34 of 35 shots against one of the league's hottest offensive teams in the Pittsburgh Penguins.|
|Mark Borowiecki||━||Led the team in hits as expected, and didn't get hemmed in the defensive end very often.|
|Cody Ceci||▲||Pretty much had a goal versus Boston had it not been for Tom Pyatt's leg. Ceci led all Sens defensemen with seven shots on goal, as well as the entire team in shot blocks.|
|Fredrik Claesson||━||The only Senator without a shot on goal this week (albeit in one game), Freddy should be getting more consistent minutes with Marc Methot out.|
|Jyrki Jokipakka||━||He exists, apparently.|
|Erik Karlsson||━||Added another two assists (both on the power play), although that may not be enough if he wants to catch Brent Burns, who's currently five points ahead. Still a solid week for the captain.|
|Marc Methot||+||Listed as week to week with a mangled finger. Hopefully he'll be back in time for the playoffs.|
|Dion Phaneuf||━||Had a nice assist on the game winning goal against Boston. He'll probably get an increase in TOI as a result of the Methot injury.|
|Chris Wideman||▼||Seems to have gone quiet in recent games, no longer topping the possession charts like he used to.|
|Derick Brassard||▼||Four points in his last sixteen games is not what we were hoping for when we acquired him in the offseason. All this despite getting heavy offensive deployment.|
|Alexandre Burrows||━||Leading the team with seven penalty minutes this week, it looks like he's officially cooled down from his hot start.|
|Chris DiDomenico||━||He also exists, apparently.|
|Ryan Dzingel||▼||Had a mysterious fourth line demotion in Boston, but has since been back in the top nine. His speed and skill are evident, but he just can't find the back of the net.|
|Mike Hoffman||▲||See biggest gains.|
|Chris Kelly||▼||Had an abysmal 29.41 CF% on the week. Wiped away a bead of sweat with Colin White opting to sign an ATO.|
|Clarke MacArthur||+||Apparently his recovery has been coming along exceptionally well, and he's aiming to be back for THIS SEASON.|
|Chris Neil||+||Was back in practice today, but I can't see where there's a place for him in the lineup.|
|Jean-Gabriel Pageau||▲||Scored against Montreal, because of course he did. Led the team with twelve shots on goal, and now has eight points in his last twelve games.|
|Tom Pyatt||━||Looked and played like he belonged in the lineup, which vastly exceeds my expectations of him from the offseason.|
|Bobby Ryan||━||Has yet to find the scoresheet since returning from injury, but a good sign is that he's averaged 2.8 shots per game in the last five contests. The bounces have just not been in his favour.|
|Zack Smith||▼||Also spending some time in the cooler, Smith has now gone nine games without a point, generating less chances than Ryan. Seems to be transitioning back to his checking role from years past, with eleven hits in the last week.|
|Viktor Stalberg||+||Missed the Habs game with an injury, although he shouldn't be out long. Participated in practice today.|
|Mark Stone||━||63.33 CF% in his first game back. This should be fun.|
|Kyle Turris||▲||Ottawa's only multi-goal scorer of the week, netting two against the B's. Was definitely a main driver of offence in the absence of Stone.|
|Tommy Wingels||▼||See biggest losses.|
Data from Natural Stat Trick and NHL.com