Are Ottawa Senators an NHL Playoff Team Again?

By Mark Donatiello
Marc DesRosiers – US PRESSWIRE

The Ottawa Senators fell to the New York Rangers in an exciting seven-game series last season against the number one seed in the Eastern Conference.  After returning most of their playoff roster, Ottawa has a complete team for the first time since their Stanley Cup run.

The Sens are off to an excellent start with a balanced, star-studded roster, but can the Ottawa Senators make the playoffs two years in a row for the first time since 2008?

Craig Anderson continues to be one of the most underrated goaltenders in hockey, balancing Ottawa’s high-powered offense with a highly capable defense.  Erik Karlsson has emerged as one of the most prolific offensive defensemen in the NHL, while veteran leadership and talented skaters keep Ottawa composed and competitive.

The Ottawa Senators don’t have any glaring weaknesses, and their six wins through ten games have Ottawa squarely in the playoff hunt again approaching the quarter-way mark on the shortened season.

The Sens’ +10 goal differential is evidence of how well the Senators have been playing on both ends of the ice to start the season.  The Senators have allowed the least goals in the NHL to start the year after building an offensive juggernaut.  The Senators are unbeaten at home in regulation through five games and markedly consistent so far, but an aura of cautious optimism prevails with this team after a half-decade of inconsistent hockey and disappointment.

With Craig Anderson between the pipes, Ottawa can beat anyone in the NHL.  The Ottawa Senators are surely a playoff team and it’s time the hockey world took notice of last year’s eighth seed that continues to improve.

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