Can Logan Brown Help Ottawa Reach the Playoffs this Season?
“Ottawa Senators v Minnesota Wild” (CC BY 2.0) by danielthornton
Last month, the Ottawa Senators made the bold move to trade up with the New Jersey Devils, a decision that ultimately allowed them to acquire Windsor Spitfires star Logan Brown. The centre was one of the very best players in his position in the OHL last year and the Senators may well have gotten a steal with the 11th overall pick.
At just 18-years-old, he is still raw but Ottawa could nurture and develop him into one of the NHL’s top stars. The Senators missed out on the playoffs last year but many believe that Ottawa could use that disappointment as a springboard for success this season. At the time of writing, 32Red Canada are offering 50/1 on Ottawa to go on and win the Stanley Cup next season and who knows, Brown could be the man to lead them to the showpiece series.
While the Stanley Cup may arguably be a little far-fetched, Brown will certainly give the Senators an added dimension – on both sides of the puck. Without a shadow of a doubt, Brown will help to give Ottawa a little bit of impetus in attack. Last season, the Senators scored 236 goals, an impressive tally by anyone’s standards. Brown will help to increase their prowess upfront and Ottawa may now overpower their opponents; they certainly have plenty of attacking talent in their ranks.
Brown’s decision to choose Team USA over Team Canada may raise a few eyebrows, but the Ottawa fans should be very respectful of his choice. After all, it won’t have any effect on his ability to perform at club level. Brown was a key component of the United States’ bronze medal-winning side at the World Junior Championship earlier this year and his impressive performances may have been the determining factor in Ottawa’s decision to select him.
— NHL (@NHL) June 29, 2016
Ottawa fans will be licking their lips at the prospect of watching Brown team up with Mike Hoffman and fellow centre Zack Smith next season. That trio will be lethal, and the entire Eastern Conference should be concerned by Ottawa’s potential. They certainly have what it takes to win the Atlantic Division, especially as it is widely regarded as the weakest in the National Hockey League. It won’t be easy but Brown and co could rise to the top of the crop next year.
As previously mentioned, Ottawa may not be able to go all the way to the Stanley Cup, but topping the relatively weak Atlantic Division is a genuine possibility. Given time, 32Red and Netbet will both offer odds on the Senators finishing at the summit of the division and punters will be keen to back Guy Boucher’s franchise in the betting markets. If they continue to improve and plan well for the season, they are certainly capable of achieving great things.
Brown won’t be able to solve Ottawa’s problems on his own – he will need some help on the defensive side of the puck. The Senators conceded far too many goals and opportunities last season and they must sharpen up at the back if they are to compete for the playoff places. If nothing else, Ottawa have the basis and young corps of players to build a dynasty era but they must begin to focus on improving their defence to stand any chance of dominating the ice hockey scene for years to come.
Ottawa are on the rise and fans will be quietly positive about their chances this season. They probably aren’t going to set the world on fire but there’s absolutely no reason why they cannot reach the playoffs. With Logan Brown in fine form, the Senators have the perfect complement behind Mike Hoffman and Zack Smith in attack. With that in mind, Ottawa could have an excellent attacking corps ahead of what might be a defining season for everyone associated with the franchise.
Article by Peter Harrison.