The Ottawa Senators were off to a better than expected start in the early going of the season, but Wednesday night against the Philadelphia Flyers seems to have derailed things quite a bit. In a match that reminded of a past decade with line brawls and physical play, the Senators left the loss with several injuries. Today they have placed Cody Ceci, Ryan Dzingel and Alex Formenton on injured reserve. While the other two are dealing with undisclosed injuries, Formenton has a concussion. Christian Jaros and Nick Paul have been recalled from the AHL to fill in.
The Senators weren’t expected by many people to win many games this season, but after looking at least competitive in the early going there was some hope growing. Players like Formenton and Thomas Chabot were showing what the next wave of talent could bring, while Mark Stone looked worth every penny of the $7.35MM contract he signed this summer. Injuries like this though will truly test the team’s depth, given that it was already razor thin at the NHL level. Jaros looked great in the preseason and could make an impact if inserted into the lineup—something that’s not guaranteed given Ben Harpur’s imminent return—but Paul has struggled so many times before for the Senators that there is little excitement about his return.
A concussion is one of the worst case scenarios in this situation, given the uncertain health effects that they can cause. Formenton is a bright spot for the future given his speed and offensive upside, and also gave fans a little taste of his toughness by getting involved in several scrums and a battle with Philadelphia’s Robert Hagg. Unfortunately it was a cross check delivered to his head by Jori Lehtera that likely caused the injury, which will at the very least slow down Formenton’s early development.