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Ottawa Senators at Tampa Bay Lightning: Budaj back in?

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It’s game 70, let’s get interactive.

RxlandS

Ottawa Senators at Tampa Bay Lightning: GAME 70

Time: 7:30

Location: Amalie Arena

Broadcast/Streaming: SUN, RDS2, TSN5

Opponent SBNation Site: Silver Seven Sens

Preview:

A tweet from Erik Erlendsson seems to indicate that Peter Budaj is back in the lineup, with Louis Domingue not on Amalie ice:

It’s reader interaction time!

This game feels destined to be a trap, because it’s after a trade deadline that the Ottawa Senators well and truly bungled (Silver Seven Sens has a pretty good article about how to fix their team over here), and because the Tampa Bay Lightning might already be looking ahead to the post-season. The team’s magic number of wins for clinching a wild card spot is something like 2 (four points), so I wouldn’t blame them. Therefore, I have one important question for all of you:

If you were GM of the Ottawa Senators, what would you do to the team this off-season?

Here are a few responses from noted SBNation writers from around the league to start the ball rolling:

  • Hardev, master of daily links for Raw Charge: I would sell Duchene, Karlsson, Stone ASAP. Pageau in a year, Ryan won’t get moved, and I would try and create a new core around Chabot, Brown, White, Formenton, et al. OR re-sign Sieloff for 8 years.
  • GeoFitz4, writer for Raw Charge: Quit.
  • AT Fulemin, writer for Pension Plan Puppets: My serious answer is: If you can re-sign Karlsson, you do it. If you can’t, you trade him, ideally unencumbered by Ryan but that may not be up to the GM. You make a related call on Duchene. You move heaven and earth to get Mark Stone locked for term in either scenario. You pick a backup — Grubauer, or even Pickard — and you get him if you can and try him out. Make a whack of bargain bin signings, mostly so you can trade them next TDL, but not so many you’re displacing your kids for next season--Chabot, White, Brown need to play. (My non-serious answer is: lock the door to your office and drink Jim Beam until Melnyk replaces you with himself.)
  • Kaitlyn, writer for Pensburgh: Fire everybody and sign Boby Ryan for 42 more years. Cut Karlsson’s hair and sell it on eBay before I’m canned.
  • Matt Esteves, In-Arena Reporter for Raw Charge: Drink myself into a stupor and scream from the top of Canadian Tire Center, “I’m rich!” Then proceed to do nothing to improve my team. Then run for Prime Minister because why not?
  • David Straub, writer for Pensburgh: Karlsson would want to stay here forever; why would we want to trade him?
  • Eric Seeds, writer for Jacket’s Cannon: Steal Eugene Melnyk’s kidneys.
  • Taylor Baird, editor of Defending Big D: Trade Karlsson for a bag of peanuts and a Slim Jim and mic drop on my way out the door to “Drop it like it’s hot”.

Comparison Chart

@loserpoints’ note:

The Senators are...not good. Especially defensively. Looking at this profile, one can understand pretty quickly why the team is likely headed for a rebuild and why their top player (Karlsson) is rumored to be considering leaving when his contract ends in the summer of 2019. This team needs personnel and system changes to be competitive.

The Lightning continue to play well and should be able to take advantage of Ottawa’s weaknesses. The Bolts have improved recently in shot generation and are getting closer to where they were earlier in the year when that was a strength. Considering how poor the Sens defense is, this game offers Tampa another chance to move those shot generation numbers further in the right direction.

Tampa Bay Lightning

Forward Lines

J.T. Miller - Steven Stamkos - Nikita Kucherov

Yanni Gourde - Brayden Point - Tyler Johnson

Alex Killorn - Anthony Cirelli - Adam Erne

Ryan Callahan - Cedric Paquette - Chris Kunitz

Cory Conacher

Defense

Victor Hedman - Anton Stralman

Mikhail Sergachev - Brayden Coburn

Ryan McDonagh - Dan Girardi

[Slater Koekkoek - Jake Dotchin - Andrej Sustr]

Goaltenders

Lineup notes

Ottawa Senators

Forwards

Mike Hoffman - Matt Duchene - Ryan Dzingel

Bobby Ryan - Jean-Gabriel Pageau - Marian Gaborik

Magnus Paajarvi - Zack Smith - Tom Pyatt

Max McCormick - Sean O’Brien - Alex Burrows

Defense

Fredrik Claesson - Erik Karlsson

Ben Harpur - Cody Ceci

Mark Borowiecki - Thomas Chabot

Goaltenders

Craig Anderson (starter)

Mike Condon

Lineup notes

Lines are from their last game vs. the Cats.