(UPDATE 3:08 PM)- It has been rumoured for more than a month now and today the Sens made it official, announcing that Troy Mann is the new Head Coach of the Belleville Senators.? Mann, who is the brother of Head Scout Trent Mann, spent the last four seasons as the Head Coach of the Hershey Bears.? He led that team to three straight playoff appearances, including a Calder Cup appearance, before struggling a little bit last year. Mann gets a two year contract with the Senators.
The madness that is Draft Weekend has come and gone and now we can settle into a nice quiet off-season.
Or maybe not.
Despite the fact that it was mostly an uneventful weekend for the Ottawa Senators, it’s not expected to stay that way for long.? July 1st is now just six days away and that becomes the next potentially crazy day for Pierre Dorion and his staff. Not because the Senators are expected to active in free agency. Far from it actually.
But more because that’s viewed as the next leverage point in the ongoing Erik Karlsson situation.
As we get set for that, another edition of the always accepted and frequently underwhelming Monday News and Notes.
-Pierre Dorion talked to reporters following the first round of the Draft and suggested that Friday ended up being one of the quietest days he’s had in terms of trade talks in a couple weeks. Bizarre considering the frenzy that surrounded Erik Karlsson in the days leading up to the Draft. Although that may have mostly been wishful thinking on TSN’s part.? At this point, I think Dorion has given teams a pretty good sense of what it would take to acquire Karlsson and now he’s mostly waiting for someone to meet that asking price.? That’s why the Senators have made it clear that there is a third option here and that’s having Karlsson at least start the final year of his deal without an extension in place.
-So who’s interested? The Vegas Golden Knights continue to be the team mentioned most but it sounds as though the likes of the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Dallas Starts are still lurking around.? Now that John Carlson is officially off the market, you would expect a few teams would turn their complete attention to Karlsson.? One of the concerns here is that ultimately, Karlsson can call his shot.? If he strongly prefers one option over the others, he can sort of let it be known that he’ll only talk about an extension with that team.? Sure the Senators can still deal him to any team not on his no trade list but the willingness to talk extension gives Karlsson a lot of control here.
-Speaking of which, the last on the record comment from the organization on this particular topic is that they will make him an offer on July 1st. Behind the scenes, the team has already talked to Karlsson’s Camp about what that offer might look like (the rumour was somewhere in the neighbourhood of $10 mil a season over eight years) but being able to do that officially this weekend may be important for the organization. It’s about optics more than anything. At the same time, teams interested in Karlsson can get a little more certainty in terms of contract numbers as of July 1st. So while there will be plenty of talk this week, it’s tough to see how or why something would happen before Canada Day.
-Karlsson isn’t the only issue Pierre Dorion is juggling right now. Late last week, it was reported that Craig Anderson was open to a trade. And while his agent denied that he was actively involved in the process, it did sound like the Senators were doing their best to accommodate.? The New York Islanders make sense, as do the Philadelphia Flyer, but you would expect that both those teams would want to see what’s available through free agency first.? It’s not วิเคราะห์บอลราคาa deep goalie market by any means but you can certainly find younger and cheaper options that Craig Anderson.? Considering his contract and his play last year, this seems like an extremely difficult deal to make.
-And now some on-ice stuff. Starting tomorrow, the team will open their annual Rookie Development Camp.? Shean Donovan is apparently running the show this year with things starting tomorrow at the Canadian Tire Centre.? All eight players selected this weekend, including 4th overall pick Brady Tkachuk, are expected to be in attendance.? A full list of Camp attendees will be released later today.? While the group will mostly be made up of Sens draft picks and players already in the organization, a handful of players have been invited to participate. That includes Chase Stewart, Luka Burzan, Gregor McLeod, Robert Lynch and Eduards Tralmarks.
-Speaking of Brady Tkachuk, man I can’t wait to watch that guy in a Sens uniform.? Like others, my initial reaction to the pick was surprise.? Really didn’t think the Senators would even have a chance at Filip Zadina so the fact that they would pass on him was a bit of a shock.? At the same time, the Senators are getting a special player in Tkachuk.? He brings so much of what the team has been missing over the years and if he reaches his potential as a player, he has a chance to be something special.? Power forwards with skill are hard to find these days and that’s exactly what he brings to the table. Good skater, strong play-maker, goes hard to the net and is basically a nightmare to play against. Tkachuk has yet to make a decision on where he’ll play next year. He’s certainly close to NHL ready.
-It’s going to be interesting to see what the Senators do with Freddy Claesson.? He’s set to be an RFA as of July 1st and according to Bruce Garrioch, the team still hasn’t decided if they’ll submit a qualifying offer.? Things are already starting to look a little bit crowded on the Ottawa blueline and it’s no secret that Claesson took a bit of a step back last year.? Ottawa has until 5:00 PM today to submit a qualifying offer. Other restricted free agents include Mark Stone and Cody Ceci along with three Belleville guys in Chris Driedger, Nick Moutrey and Nick Paul.
-It was overshadowed a little bit last week but the Senators have officially released their schedule for the 2018-2019 season. Safe to assume the Senators weren’t thrilled with how things played out again this year.? They will play 16 back to backs (8 at home, 8 on the road) which again has them among the league leaders in that category.? Also, their longest home stand of the year comes in the second week of the season which will almost certainly be an issue from a ticket selling perspective. Negotiating schedule preferences was always a big part of Cyril Leeder’s responsibilities as Team President and you wonder if the lack of an advocate on that front plays into it a little bit.? That or the entire league is against us.
-John Tavares is NOT expected to meet with the Senators during the Free Agency period. FRIG.