In a week where the Ottawa Senators scored a dismal five goals in four games, it’s difficult to pick three players that stood out. Nevertheless, I’m contractually obligated to do it, so here are the Ottawa Senators’ Three Stars for Week 9 of the NHL season.
- Brady Tkachuk: I mentioned this in my recap of the god-awful Minnesota game (I didn’t include the link, you don’t deserve to relive that), but Brady Tkachuk is always red-lining. Whether the Sens are up five or down five, Brady’s doing his best to make things happen. He scored in the aforementioned calamity, and was creating chances in every other. Tkachuk led the team in hits over the stretch, and is second on the team with a 51.48% Corsi rating. Whether winning or losing, Tkachuk is always putting the pedal to the metal. He also was the decisive winner of the Sens’ Movember campaign:
Oh...and here’s Brady’s final result this year: pic.twitter.com/V9DkwPpD7i— Ottawa Senators (@Senators) December 1, 2019
2. Thomas Chabot: Hotsam scored a gorgeous goal against the Bruins, and added another assist against Calgary, in what amounted to a solid week for the young defender. He wasn’t great against the Wild, but I think the only star from that game is me for sitting through it. The tally against the Bruins was world-class, though, and it just goes to show you how skilled Chabot truly is. Surround him with some more capable players, and he is going to be a surefire Norris winner in no time.
3. Jean-Gabriel Pageau: Pageau only had the one goal this week, but considering Ottawa as a whole only had five, it’s hard to be too critical. The PagerTrain leads the Senators in points, and had 11 goals in the month of November, which is the fourth-best November performance in team history. Regardless of what the Sens are going to do with him, Pageau is making their decision tougher and tougher as the season goes on.
Marcus Hogberg may only get the one start on his call-up, but he looked good against Calgary despite the loss. Hoggy stopped 24 of 26, only giving up two goals in a game where his team gave him no run support. His appearances may be limited this year, but with Hogberg on a one-way deal next year, hopefully this can start something positive for him to build on.
Connor Brown has just one point in his last nine games, and seems to be cooling off after what was a hot start. I like Brown, and wouldn’t mind seeing the Sens hang on to him long-term, but it seems like his role should be that of a bottom-six forward. Ottawa needs someone other than Tkachuk, Duclair, and Pageau to start producing, and I don’t think Brown fits the bill.
Who to Watch:
With the offensive well quickly drying up, and the kids currently lighting it up in BelleVegas, I would expect a call-up pretty soon. Drake Batherson is currently leading the AHL in scoring, and Rudy Balcers has 12 points in eight games after returning from injury. Either one of them seems to be a prime candidate, but with a spot more likely to open up in the bottom six, I would expect Yung Dolf to be back pretty soon.