The Ottawa Senators aren’t competing for the playoffs this season, even if a recent hot streak brought them a little more respectability—the team had won four of their last six before getting pummeled by the Carolina Hurricanes last night. No, this season is entirely about development as they look to turn the page on the old guard and install a new identity under rookie head coach D.J. Smith.
Because development should be their primary concern, Wayne Scanlan of Sportsnet examines how the team is using one of their top defensive prospects and suggests that Erik Brannstrom could benefit from a little more time in the AHL. The Senators are back in action tomorrow night against the New Jersey Devils, in a battle for the bottom of the Eastern Conference.
- Leo Komarov has been activated from injured reserve by the New York Islanders, giving them another one of their veteran forward options for their game tomorrow. That game is against Komarov’s former team as the Islanders welcome in the Toronto Maple Leafs for the first time this season. The 32-year old forward is a versatile player and registered 26 points for the Islanders last season, but will be playing just his eighth game this year after dealing with injury for the last several weeks.
- Speaking of forwards missing time to injury, St. Louis Blues sniper Vladimir Tarasenko spoke for the first time today and explained to reporters including Lou Korac of NHL.com that he’s not sure if he’ll be able to play again this season. Tarasenko underwent shoulder surgery on October 29th and will be re-evaluated in five months, but hopes he can come back sooner than expected like he has from previous injuries.