2013 was a year to remember for Craig Anderson.
He went 12-9-2 with a 1.69 goals against average for the Ottawa Senators and helped the team get to the second round of the NHL playoffs. The question is obvious heading into next year: can Anderson keep it up and play just as well next season? I think the answer is no.
You can’t expect a player who played like that at age 32 to do it all over again. The Senators have cleared out the goalie situation for him, and he will need to be the star that he was this season all over again. He had some injuries this season that hampered him from being even better, but a 1.69 isn’t a realistic number. He has a 2.71 GAA for his career and while he has been solid, he isn’t going to become the next superstar goalie.
Ottawa has a very solid goalie who will lead them to big things again next year. I have no doubt about that happening, but the offense will need to support Anderson a lot. I think we will see Anderson giving up something more like 2.5 goals a game on average. If the Senators can find the offense to deal with that statistic, they should be just as good or even better next season.
I’m very pleased and excited to see if Anderson has it in him again as he was a revelation for a lot of fans this year. The regression back to his career averages should be expected, though.