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The team after 2006-07

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Old
01-31-2013, 03:45 PM
  #1
inthewings
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The team after 2006-07

The five years since have obviously been pretty tough, but I often look back on that roster and wonder what happened. That team should have been able to continue winning. Look what they had to build around (ages for 07/08 season):

1. Maybe the best young C depth in the league:
Spezza (24)
Fisher (27)
Vermette (25)
Kelly (27)

2. Two elite wingers:
Heatley (27)
Alfredsson (35)

3. 3/6ths of a very solid D-core:
Meszaros (22)
Volchenkov (25)
Phillips (29)

4. A solid support cast including:
Neil (28)
Eaves (23)
Foligno (20)

We'll probably never know what happened with Heatley, but that is a solid core of players, and all but Alfredsson on the right side of 30. Off the top of my head, the only team currently set up better at C both short and long-term than that team is Pittsburgh.

It really is a shame what happened to that group. I wonder what could have fixed it. A legit #1 goalie? Rounding out the D with 6 solid guys?

Anyway, no real point to the thread other than thinking out loud.

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01-31-2013, 03:47 PM
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NyQuil
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My first thought is that the defence is pretty suspect.

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01-31-2013, 03:49 PM
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My first thought is that the defence is pretty suspect.
Indeed. But the depth up front is completely absurd, and IMO a solid 6-man group would have been enough to win games given the depth up front. But I've always believed that teams could find success without a true #1 guy. More than 1 way to skin a cat and all that.

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01-31-2013, 03:51 PM
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Indeed. But the depth up front is completely absurd, and IMO a solid 6-man group would have been enough to win games given the depth up front. But I've always believed that teams could find success without a true #1 guy. More than 1 way to skin a cat and all that.
Can you do it with defence by committee and mediocre goaltending?

When Carolina did it, Cam Ward was playing pretty well.

Interesting to see the names again though.

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01-31-2013, 03:58 PM
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You cant talk about it on this board, but anyone that visited bars in this city knew what the problem was with that roster. They cleared out the problems, and now this team acts like a TEAM. There was a pretty well documented split on that team. The veterans who did not like having some of the younger guys waster all their talent and energy on having fun. It cause the team to play like a bunch of individuals.

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01-31-2013, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by NyQuil View Post
Can you do it with defence by committee and mediocre goaltending?

When Carolina did it, Cam Ward was playing pretty well.

Interesting to see the names again though.
It's an interesting topic of discussion. Especially given the uniformity of goaltending talent outside the top few guys. The Flyers last year managed to rack up 103 points with a loaded forward group and some of the worst defense I've ever seen, and recently the Canes and Lightning have managed to win a Cup without a legit #1 d-man.

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01-31-2013, 04:01 PM
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You cant talk about it on this board, but anyone that visited bars in this city knew what the problem was with that roster. They cleared out the problems, and now this team acts like a TEAM.
That doesn't really fly as an excuse unless you believe this was/is the only team with that issue.

Edit: If you're just breaking it down to factions as per your edit, remember guys like Neil and Spezza were supposedly on different sides yet ave coexisted for a decade, someone like Alfie (remember, he was the one who dared Emery to eat the cockroach etc.) was in the middle and respected guys like Kelly were on the "young and wild" side.

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01-31-2013, 04:06 PM
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That doesn't really fly as an excuse unless you believe this was/is the only team with that issue.
I dont, but it clearly extended to an extreme here. When your starting goaltender is out partying until 3am the night before a SCF game, thats a little out of the ordinary.

It was a big enough problem that vets on the team were willing to divide the dressing room over it.

It was a big enough problem that management targeted players who were "rumoured" to be a problem and got them out (players that later entered substance abuse programs, and developed rare diseases associated with their rumoured substance use)

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01-31-2013, 04:06 PM
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You cant talk about it on this board, but anyone that visited bars in this city knew what the problem was with that roster. They cleared out the problems, and now this team acts like a TEAM. There was a pretty well documented split on that team. The veterans who did not like having some of the younger guys waster all their talent and energy on having fun. It cause the team to play like a bunch of individuals.
I remember the rumours, but for better or worse I tend to avoid putting stock in narratives like that. IMO more often than not they're just a by-product of people's tendency to want an explanation for everything.

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01-31-2013, 04:10 PM
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I remember the rumours, but for better or worse I tend to avoid putting stock in narratives like that. IMO more often than not they're just a by-product of people's tendency to want an explanation for everything.
Talk to anyone who went to a bar in those years, or who was a server, or one of the many puck bunnies in the city.

Theres a reason so many people believed it. They saw it themselves.

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01-31-2013, 04:15 PM
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inthewings
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Originally Posted by SilverSeven View Post
Talk to anyone who went to a bar in those years, or who was a server, or one of the many puck bunnies in the city.

Theres a reason so many people believed it. They saw it themselves.
I'm not saying it isn't true. But people were saying the same things about Mike Richards and Jeff Carter at this time last year. Maybe in this case you're 100% correct, but most heresay surrounding players is little more than a false narrative.

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01-31-2013, 06:29 PM
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The 05-06 edition of the team that ended up imploding in the 1st round was actually the scariest roster the Sens have ever iced.

Spezza, Heatley, Alfredsson, Havlat, Fisher, Neil, Vermette, Schaefer, Kelly

Redden (right before he turned into a terrible hockey player), Chara, Phillips, Volchenkov, Meszaros and most importantly Hasek (backed up by Emery).

The next year, the Cup finals team had a lot of that depth and star power stripped but still went as far as it did on the strength of the phenomenal first line. But they lived and died by that line and when they didn't produce in the Finals, there were predictable results.

It's common knowledge that it wasn't the talent that ripped apart the team in the John Paddock coached following season (they went 16-3 to start the season). Emery and his massively inflated ego, new contract and indifference to doing anything on the ice to improve himself while he was having way too much fun being King A-hole all over town absolutely ripped the team apart and caused the division in the dressing room.

He got his coach fired, a couple of his buddies traded or released and the Sens considered him such a problem that they ate his contract by buying it out in the offseason only 1 year into it just so they could get his entitled ass out of the city.

Unfortunately, the Sens couldn't rebuild correctly after that because all the top player's deals came up that season and the Sens had to give them massive raises in order to keep them in the fold, thus maxing out their cap room. Any secondary player was dumped for spare parts or allowed to walk for nothing because there was no money left. Muckler didn't care about drafting or developing players so there were no young players to take up the slack and the team started the decline.

Murray didn't have the ability to make significant changes because the team had the core locked up to hefty deals and there were no young assets to deal from. He needed to build through the draft (which takes time) and patch the holes with whatever cheap filler there was out there (hello Randy Robitaille, Jason Smith, Jarko Ruutu, Jesse Winchester etc). It's only now really where you're starting to see the results of the 5 years of drafting and developing the org has done over Murray's watch. That's how long it's taken to get out of the shadow of the mess John Muckler left him with.

There's your history lesson. Hope that answers your question.

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01-31-2013, 06:32 PM
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That 12 person team has a cap hit of $47M. Our current 24 man roster has a cap hit of $52M. You'd need to fill in the rest of that team with $1-2M scrubs to fit under the cap, and you'd probably get lit up every night.

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01-31-2013, 09:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DefenseMinister View Post
The 05-06 edition of the team that ended up imploding in the 1st round was actually the scariest roster the Sens have ever iced.

Spezza, Heatley, Alfredsson, Havlat, Fisher, Neil, Vermette, Schaefer, Kelly

Redden (right before he turned into a terrible hockey player), Chara, Phillips, Volchenkov, Meszaros and most importantly Hasek (backed up by Emery).

The next year, the Cup finals team had a lot of that depth and star power stripped but still went as far as it did on the strength of the phenomenal first line. But they lived and died by that line and when they didn't produce in the Finals, there were predictable results.

It's common knowledge that it wasn't the talent that ripped apart the team in the John Paddock coached following season (they went 16-3 to start the season). Emery and his massively inflated ego, new contract and indifference to doing anything on the ice to improve himself while he was having way too much fun being King A-hole all over town absolutely ripped the team apart and caused the division in the dressing room.

He got his coach fired, a couple of his buddies traded or released and the Sens considered him such a problem that they ate his contract by buying it out in the offseason only 1 year into it just so they could get his entitled ass out of the city.

Unfortunately, the Sens couldn't rebuild correctly after that because all the top player's deals came up that season and the Sens had to give them massive raises in order to keep them in the fold, thus maxing out their cap room. Any secondary player was dumped for spare parts or allowed to walk for nothing because there was no money left. Muckler didn't care about drafting or developing players so there were no young players to take up the slack and the team started the decline.

Murray didn't have the ability to make significant changes because the team had the core locked up to hefty deals and there were no young assets to deal from. He needed to build through the draft (which takes time) and patch the holes with whatever cheap filler there was out there (hello Randy Robitaille, Jason Smith, Jarko Ruutu, Jesse Winchester etc). It's only now really where you're starting to see the results of the 5 years of drafting and developing the org has done over Murray's watch. That's how long it's taken to get out of the shadow of the mess John Muckler left him with.

There's your history lesson. Hope that answers your question.
Epic post!

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01-31-2013, 09:22 PM
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Epic post!
agreed

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01-31-2013, 09:25 PM
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inthewings
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Originally Posted by DefenseMinister View Post
The 05-06 edition of the team that ended up imploding in the 1st round was actually the scariest roster the Sens have ever iced.

Spezza, Heatley, Alfredsson, Havlat, Fisher, Neil, Vermette, Schaefer, Kelly

Redden (right before he turned into a terrible hockey player), Chara, Phillips, Volchenkov, Meszaros and most importantly Hasek (backed up by Emery).

The next year, the Cup finals team had a lot of that depth and star power stripped but still went as far as it did on the strength of the phenomenal first line. But they lived and died by that line and when they didn't produce in the Finals, there were predictable results.

It's common knowledge that it wasn't the talent that ripped apart the team in the John Paddock coached following season (they went 16-3 to start the season). Emery and his massively inflated ego, new contract and indifference to doing anything on the ice to improve himself while he was having way too much fun being King A-hole all over town absolutely ripped the team apart and caused the division in the dressing room.

He got his coach fired, a couple of his buddies traded or released and the Sens considered him such a problem that they ate his contract by buying it out in the offseason only 1 year into it just so they could get his entitled ass out of the city.

Unfortunately, the Sens couldn't rebuild correctly after that because all the top player's deals came up that season and the Sens had to give them massive raises in order to keep them in the fold, thus maxing out their cap room. Any secondary player was dumped for spare parts or allowed to walk for nothing because there was no money left. Muckler didn't care about drafting or developing players so there were no young players to take up the slack and the team started the decline.

Murray didn't have the ability to make significant changes because the team had the core locked up to hefty deals and there were no young assets to deal from. He needed to build through the draft (which takes time) and patch the holes with whatever cheap filler there was out there (hello Randy Robitaille, Jason Smith, Jarko Ruutu, Jesse Winchester etc). It's only now really where you're starting to see the results of the 5 years of drafting and developing the org has done over Murray's watch. That's how long it's taken to get out of the shadow of the mess John Muckler left him with.

There's your history lesson. Hope that answers your question.
I'm aware of what happened, I'm just not convinced it couldn't have been avoided.

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01-31-2013, 09:27 PM
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Bad coaching, bad goaltending, very top heavy, defense was terribly lacking in skill. We did not in fact have a good supporting cast. Kelly and Neil were it. Foligno wasn't a factor until 08-09 (remember that team that featured Alex Picard, Brendan Bell, Ryan Shannon etc?), Eaves had a good rookie season and was never the same after he was murdered by Colby Armstrong.

We had one line. That was it. To pile it on, two of those 3 players were fairly injury prone. They didn't have a legit puck mover on the back end to get it to them either so their 20 minutes per game were hard fought.

Just think of it this way, after Wade Redden deteriorated before our eyes, our best puck mover and PPQB of the era was Filip Kuba. Luke Richardson, Matt Carkner, Christoph Schubert and Jason Smith were taking regular shifts. Our offensive D were Chris Campoli, Alex Picard, Brian Lee and BRENDAN BELL for god's sakes.

Heatley asking for a trade was the best thing that could have happened to this team. It forced the team to change their salary structure that wasn't working and ultimately forced a rebuild. It also helped that Murray took over and hired more than 3 amateur scouts. There's that whole Muckler effect too...

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01-31-2013, 09:32 PM
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Spezza
Turris
Zibanejad
Smith

Perry
Silfverberg

Karlsson
Cowen
Methot
Wiercioch
Ceci

Neil
Condra
O'Brien
Greening

Anderson
Lehner

Next year we can have a stronger more all-around team. Defense is ten-folds better, strength is phenomenal in all areas. Weakest in the winger position and that's if we even get someone NEAR Perry, if we do though, we look like favs in the East.

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01-31-2013, 09:33 PM
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By the way, if Dominik Hasek was playing in 06 playoffs, we would have won the cup.

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01-31-2013, 09:36 PM
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As has been said, the blueline was a problem, goaltending was never consistent, the support cast was fairly limited, factionalism, and lack of prospects hurt the club. Paddock lost the room, too.

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01-31-2013, 09:36 PM
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By the way, if Dominik Hasek was playing in 06 playoffs, we would have won the cup.
Aside from game 1 of that series, Emery played well. I don't think Hasek would have made much of a difference. We lost how many of those games in OT? Someone else needed to step up in our ridiculously stacked line up and they didn't.

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01-31-2013, 09:43 PM
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Aside from game 1 of that series, Emery played well. I don't think Hasek would have made much of a difference. We lost how many of those games in OT? Someone else needed to step up in our ridiculously stacked line up and they didn't.
We lost those games in OT because Emery had a 0.250SV% in overtime. Hasek HAS to be better than that...

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01-31-2013, 09:48 PM
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I'm aware of what happened, I'm just not convinced it couldn't have been avoided.
Only thing Murray could have done to help was to find a coach as good as Maclean immediately instead of on his 4th try and if he found a goalie like Anderson earlier. Even then, it would have only improved things somewhat, the underlying issues around the lack of depth were still present.

I disagree strongly with your contention that there was a lot of depth on that squad. The team had 3 elite players that they leaned on heavily. It was actually the beginning of the spiral if you look at things in retrospect.

The combination of the core players having their deals coming up which forced the team to essentially cap out to keep them and the lack of any viable young cheap players that could be moved up to provide depth and become the next transition of star players killed them.

The only major move Murray could have made to alter things would be to trade some of his core players for youth in order to replenish the system and provide financial flexibility to bring in other top players. But the timing of all of Heatley, Spezza, Alfie, Kelly, Emery and Fisher's extensions all came very shortly after their Cup final run and the organization would have been crucified by the fanbase if they hadn't brought back the heroes from that team.

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01-31-2013, 09:53 PM
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Aside from game 1 of that series, Emery played well. I don't think Hasek would have made much of a difference. We lost how many of those games in OT? Someone else needed to step up in our ridiculously stacked line up and they didn't.
Hasek was one of the best goalies in the league last year and lead every category before he was injured. The confidence level the boys played with Hasek in net was ridiculous compared to Emery. They were so scared. Besdies, I don't think you recall Emery's play as vividly as I do. Every shot, was a breath held by Sens fans.

IIRC, they went to Hasek in game 3 and asked if he could play cause they just weren't feeling Ray. Ironically enough he played his best game and won 2-1 but that's as big as the fairy-tale was with him.

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01-31-2013, 10:08 PM
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inthewings
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Only thing Murray could have done to help was to find a coach as good as Maclean immediately instead of on his 4th try and if he found a goalie like Anderson earlier. Even then, it would have only improved things somewhat, the underlying issues around the lack of depth were still present.

I disagree strongly with your contention that there was a lot of depth on that squad. The team had 3 elite players that they leaned on heavily. It was actually the beginning of the spiral if you look at things in retrospect.

The combination of the core players having their deals coming up which forced the team to essentially cap out to keep them and the lack of any viable young cheap players that could be moved up to provide depth and become the next transition of star players killed them.

The only major move Murray could have made to alter things would be to trade some of his core players for youth in order to replenish the system and provide financial flexibility to bring in other top players. But the timing of all of Heatley, Spezza, Alfie, Kelly, Emery and Fisher's extensions all came very shortly after their Cup final run and the organization would have been crucified by the fanbase if they hadn't brought back the heroes from that team.
The team had Spezza, Fisher, Vemette, and Kelly down the middle with two elite wingers, and and pretty solid support cast. That's about as deep as it gets in terms of forwards. I think there definitely could have been moves to be made to augment that core - starting with the hiring of a coach who wasn't John Paddock.

They actually remind me quite a lot of the present-day Flyers, with a deeper offense and worse goaltending. It will be interesting to see how they tackle some of the same issues we faced 5 years ago.

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