Blogger's Breakouts 2011 - Ottawa Senators

Does Peter think Gonchar is finished? Keep reading to find out.

The Senators are looking a lot better for fantasy owners this year relative to last year's disaster.  The addition of Craig Anderson and couple of young players potentially getting big opportunities could mean we see more than one breakout on this team.  So, to help us figure out what's going on in Ottawa we brought in Senators expert Peter Raaymakers from Silver Seven.

We asked Peter seven Senators related questions we thought would be of interest to fantasy players.  Check out his answers below.

Click here for more Blogger's Breakouts.

If you're interested in FHS' breakout picks and fantasy take on the Sens check out our draft kit which includes The Breakout Bible, the Fantasy Scouting Report (with SuperStats included) and our Fantasy Prospect Database.

BY PETER RAAYMAKERS FROM SILVER SEVEN

Q1) Senators Breakout of the Year?
I'll pick Nikita Filatov, because it seems like the easy choice. There's no denying he's got skill, and you've got to think he'll get a good opportunity to play top-line minutes alongside Jason Spezza, who'll set him up left and right. It's a boom-or-bust pick, but if it works out, Filatov's going to do very, very well for you.
 
Q2) Darkhorse Breakout on the Senators?
One guy who sort of broke out a couple seasons ago but really took a step back last season was Peter Regin, but I think things are in place for him to have a true breakout year this year. There's a good chance he'll play second-line minutes, perhaps alongside Daniel Alfredsson, so I think we could see good things from Regin under a new coach's system.
 
Q3) League-Wide Breakout of the Year?
Sounds funny to say considering he's had 50 pts and 46 pts in the last two seasons, but I think Jakub Voracek could step up for the Philadelphia Flyers and have a really strong year this year. If Jagr is left behind a little bit, Voracek will step onto the top line and definitely get a lot of PP time, so the cards are on his side.
 Q4) Player likely to Breakdown on the Senators?
Chris Neil had a pretty brutal season last year--6G, 10A in 80GP--and though I don't think he'll do worse than that this year, I don't think he'll do much better, either. Whether it's the fact that he's being passed by younger players or just the miles adding up, it seems like Neil's game is fading.
 
Q5) Best Fantasy Prospect on the Senators?

David Rundblad.  It's possible he could surprise a lot of people this season, but two things are working against him: First, the fact that both Erik Karlsson and Sergei Gonchar are ahead of him in powerplay time (and Filip Kuba and Brian Lee would both likely compete with him, too), and second, the fact that he's still a young guy on a deep blue line who might start the season in the AHL.

Q6) How do you see the Senators goalie situation playing out this year?
Craig Anderson is far from a sure thing, but the Senators should have significantly improved goaltending with Andy and Alex Auld, compared to Brian Elliott and an oft-injured Pascal Leclaire. Will improved goaltending translate into wins? Not necessarily; that will depend a lot on whether or not the Senators forwards can muster any sustained offence.
 
Q7) Sergei Gonchar & Daniel Alfredsson were both brutal last year... do you think they are finished?
Nope, I definitely don't think they're finished. They're not going to approach career numbers, don't get me wrong, but I think both Gonchar and Alfredsson are in a better place this year. Alfie had surgery over the off-season and seems to be in some of the best shape of the past couple seasons, while Gonchar just seemed to be lost in Cory Clouston's system--I think a bit more stability and Paul MacLean's abilities will make things easier on him, and his points will improve as a result.



Great job... thanks to Peter for his input.  If you have any other Sens related questions throw them in the comments and we (or hopefully Peter) will answer them.

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