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The 2016–17 Ottawa Senators season was the 25th season of the Ottawa Senators of the National Hockey League (NHL).[1] After failing to make the playoffs in 2015–16, the Senators replaced their management and coaching staff, promoting Pierre Dorion to general manager, and hiring Guy Boucher and Marc Crawford and assistants to coach the team. The team would defy the predictions of much of the media by qualifying for the Stanley Cup playoffs, and then by winning two rounds in the playoffs before losing in double overtime in game seven of the Eastern Conference Final to the eventual Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins.

2016–17 Ottawa Senators
Division2nd Atlantic
Conference6th Eastern
2016–17 record44–28–10
Home record22–11–8
Road record22–17–2
Goals for212
Goals against214
Team information
General ManagerPierre Dorion
CoachGuy Boucher
CaptainErik Karlsson
Alternate captainsChris Neil
Dion Phaneuf
Kyle Turris
ArenaCanadian Tire Centre
Average attendance16,744 (87.4%)
Minor league affiliate(s)Binghamton Senators (AHL)
Wichita Thunder (ECHL)
Team leaders
GoalsKyle Turris (27)
AssistsErik Karlsson (54)
PointsErik Karlsson (71)
Penalty minutesMark Borowiecki (154)
Plus/minusMike Hoffman (+17)
WinsCraig Anderson (25)
Goals against averageCraig Anderson (2.28)

As of 2018, this is the only time in the post-Daniel Alfredsson era where the Senators were close to the finals and it would've been their first finals appearance since 2007. Coincidentally they were close to rematching the Anaheim Ducks, whom they lost to in the 2007 Finals.

The season was notable for off-ice issues. Despite the success of the team, attendance at Canadian Tire Centre dropped during the regular season, to the lowest average gate by the team in 20 seasons.[2] The team fired its head of marketing early in the season. The team also replaced its president, co-founder Cyril Leeder, with Tom Anselmi in January 2017.

Contents

Off-seasonEdit

On April 10, 2016, the day after the final game of the 2015–16 season, general manager Bryan Murray announced his resignation as manager and that he would continue in an advisory role with the club. Assistant general manager Pierre Dorion was elevated to the general manager position.[3] On April 12, the Senators fired head coach Dave Cameron.[4] On May 8, the Senators hired former Tampa Bay Lightning head coach Guy Boucher as their new head coach.[5] On the following day, Marc Crawford was announced as associate coach.[6] On June 15, the Senators hired Rob Cookson as an assistant coach. Cookson had spent the last four seasons as an assistant to Crawford with the Zurich Lions of Switzerland's A-League where he contributed to the team's championship in the 2013-14 season. Prior to this, he was a member of the Calgary Flames coaching staff for 11 seasons from the 2000-01 to 2010-11 seasons.[7]

The Senators announced that they will retire the #11 jersey of former team captain Daniel Alfredsson. The ceremony will take place on Thursday, December 29, prior to the Senators' home game against the Detroit Red Wings. This will be the second jersey to be retired by the modern Senators franchise since they came back into the league. The first jersey retirement ceremony the club held was for the late Frank Finnigan of the original Ottawa Senators, who had his #8 jersey retired prior to the current franchise's inaugural game on October 8, 1992 against the Montreal Canadiens.[8]

The Senators changed their ECHL affiliate after their former affiliate, the Evansville IceMen, went dormant for the season due to arena lease issues. On July 14, 2016, the Senators announced an affiliation agreement with the Wichita Thunder.[9] On September 26, the Senators announced that they would move their American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate Binghamton Senators to Belleville, Ontario, for the 2017–18 season. The club will be renamed the Belleville Senators.[10]


Pre-seasonEdit

The Senators played a seven-game pre-season schedule. The schedule included two home games against the Montreal Canadiens and Buffalo Sabres, three road games against the Montreal Canadiens, Buffalo Sabres, and Winnipeg Jets, and two neutral-site games against the Toronto Maple Leafs with one taking place in Halifax, Nova Scotia and the other in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.[11]

Regular seasonEdit

The Senators opened the regular season at home on Wednesday, October 12 against their provincial rivals, the Toronto Maple Leafs. The first away game of their schedule was Monday, October 17 in Detroit against the Red Wings. They will conclude their home schedule on Saturday, April 8 against the New York Rangers. Their last regular season game will take place a day later in Brooklyn, New York against the Islanders.[12]

On December 29, 2016, before a game against the Detroit Red Wings, the Senators retired the #11 jersey of former player Daniel Alfredsson. On January 24, 2017, the Senators honoured Bryan Murray as the first member of their "Ring of Honour" at the Canadian Tire Centre, before a game against the Washington Capitals. On January 25, 2017, the Senators announced a new team president Tom Anselmi, replacing founder Cyril Leeder who steps down as president of the team.

On March 17, 2017, the NHL announced that an outdoor game would be played at the TD Place Stadium in Ottawa on December 16, 2017. Known as the NHL 100 Classic, it is a regular-season game for the Senators and the Montreal Canadiens. This will commemorate the first NHL game, held in Ottawa on December 19, 1917, between the Senators and Canadiens. It is one of the events to commemorate the 100-year anniversary of the NHL and the 150-year anniversary of the founding of Canada. According to NHL president Gary Bettman: "To launch our next 100 years, we believe it is only right to bring the Canadiens and the Senators back together."[13]

The attendance at home games dropped in 2016-17 according to ESPN. The Senators drew an average of 16,744 per game for a total of 686,534 for the season. This was 87% of capacity.[14] In 2015–16, the Senators drew an average of 18,084 per game.[15] The drop in attendance was noticed by the media, especially after games in the playoffs did not sell out. The drop, which was the third-largest in the league in the last ten years, was attributed to various factors, including a payroll systems issue for Government of Canada employees, lack of support for francophone fans, grumbling about the owner and other factors.[2] Early in the season, the club fired persons in its marketing department, which led to at least one lawsuit.[16]

PlayoffsEdit

On April 6, the Ottawa Senators qualified for the 2017 playoffs with a 2–1 shootout win over Boston Bruins. On April 8, the Ottawa Senators clinched home-ice advantage in the first round for the first time since 2007 after a 3–1 victory over the New York Rangers.

The Senators played the Boston Bruins in the first round. This was the first Ottawa–Boston series since the 1927 Stanley Cup Finals, the first for the contemporary Ottawa franchise versus the Bruins. The Senators defeated the Bruins four games to two and moved on to the second round.

The Senators faced the New York Rangers in the second round. This was the second postseason meeting in the last five years between the two teams. The New York Rangers won the series 4-3 back in 2012. The Senators defeated the Rangers four games to two and advanced to the Eastern Conference Final. This marks the third time in franchise history the Senators have made it to the third round, and the first time since 2007, when they advanced to the Stanley Cup Final after defeating the Buffalo Sabres in five games.

The Senators took on the Pittsburgh Penguins in the Eastern Conference Final. This marked the fourth time the two teams have met in a postseason series, with the Penguins taking three out of the four matchups. The Ottawa Senators are the only Canadian team to advance to the Conference Final in three different seasons in the last 20 years. The Senators would fall in seven games to the Penguins, with the seventh game being decided in double overtime. The Penguins would go on to defeat the Nashville Predators to win the Stanley Cup.

StandingsEdit

Divisional standingsEdit

Atlantic Division
Pos Team GP W L OTL ROW GF GA GD Pts
1 y – Montreal Canadiens 82 47 26 9 44 226 200 +26 103
2 x – Ottawa Senators 82 44 28 10 38 212 214 −2 98
3 x – Boston Bruins 82 44 31 7 42 234 212 +22 95
4 x – Toronto Maple Leafs 82 40 27 15 39 251 242 +9 95
5 Tampa Bay Lightning 82 42 30 10 38 234 227 +7 94
6 Florida Panthers 82 35 36 11 30 210 237 −27 81
7 Detroit Red Wings 82 33 36 13 24 207 244 −37 79
8 Buffalo Sabres 82 33 37 12 31 201 237 −36 78
Source: National Hockey League
x – Clinched playoff spot; y – Clinched division.

Conference standingsEdit

Top 3 (Metropolitan Division)
Pos Team GP W L OTL ROW GF GA GD Pts
1 p – Washington Capitals 82 55 19 8 53 263 182 +81 118
2 x – Pittsburgh Penguins 82 50 21 11 46 282 234 +48 111
3 x – Columbus Blue Jackets 82 50 24 8 47 249 195 +54 108
Source: National Hockey League
p – Clinched Presidents' Trophy; x – Clinched playoff spot.
Top 3 (Atlantic Division)
Pos Team GP W L OTL ROW GF GA GD Pts
1 y – Montreal Canadiens 82 47 26 9 44 226 200 +26 103
2 x – Ottawa Senators 82 44 28 10 38 212 214 −2 98
3 x – Boston Bruins 82 44 31 7 42 234 212 +22 95
Source: National Hockey League
x – Clinched playoff spot; y – Clinched division.
Eastern Conference Wild Card
Pos Div Team GP W L OTL ROW GF GA GD Pts
1 ME x – New York Rangers 82 48 28 6 45 256 220 +36 102
2 AT x – Toronto Maple Leafs 82 40 27 15 39 251 242 +9 95
3 ME New York Islanders 82 41 29 12 39 241 242 −1 94
4 AT Tampa Bay Lightning 82 42 30 10 38 234 227 +7 94
5 ME Philadelphia Flyers 82 39 33 10 32 219 236 −17 88
6 ME Carolina Hurricanes 82 36 31 15 33 215 236 −21 87
7 AT Florida Panthers 82 35 36 11 30 210 237 −27 81
8 AT Detroit Red Wings 82 33 36 13 24 207 244 −37 79
9 AT Buffalo Sabres 82 33 37 12 31 201 237 −36 78
10 ME New Jersey Devils 82 28 40 14 25 183 244 −61 70
Source: National Hockey League
x – Clinched playoff spot.

Schedule and resultsEdit

Pre-seasonEdit

Regular seasonEdit

2016–17 Game Log (Record: 44–28–10; Home: 22–11–8 Road: 22–17–2)

PlayoffsEdit

2017 Stanley Cup playoffs

Legend:   Win   Loss

PlayersEdit

StatisticsEdit

Final Stats[125]

Scoring
Goaltenders
Regular Season
Player GP GS TOI W L OT GA GAA SA SV% SO G A PIM
Craig Anderson 40 40 2416:14 25 11 4 92 2.28 1247 .926 5 0 1 0
Mike Condon 40 38 2304:50 19 14 6 96 2.50 1114 .914 5 0 0 4
Andrew Hammond 6 4 205:53 0 2 0 14 4.08 86 .837 0 0 0 0
Chris Driedger 1 0 40:00 0 1 0 4 6.00 15 .733 0 0 0 0
Playoffs
Player GP GS TOI W L GA GAA SA SV% SO G A PIM
Craig Anderson 19 19 1178:08 11 8 46 2.34 590 .922 1 0 1 0
Mike Condon 2 0 61:17 0 0 4 3.92 32 .875 0 0 0 0

Denotes player spent time with another team before joining the Senators. Stats reflect time with the Senators only.
No longer with team.
Bold denotes team leader in that category.

AwardsEdit

Regular Season
Player Award Awarded
Craig Anderson NHL First Star of the Week[126] October 31, 2016
Craig Anderson NHL First Star of the Week[127] November 28, 2016
Erik Karlsson NHL Third Star of the Week[128] March 13, 2017
Craig Anderson NHL First Star of the Week[129] April 10, 2017

NHL awardsEdit

Trophy Player Status
Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy Craig Anderson Winner
James Norris Memorial Trophy Erik Karlsson Finalist
NHL General Manager of the Year Award Pierre Dorion Finalist

RecordsEdit

Player Record Date
Erik Karlsson Franchise record for most career goals by a defenceman (102) October 18, 2016
Erik Karlsson Franchise record for most career points by a defenceman (411) December 7, 2016
Erik Karlsson Franchise record for most career assists by a defenceman (310) December 27, 2016
Mike Condon Franchise record for most consecutive appearances by a goaltender (26) February 2, 2017
Erik Karlsson Franchise record for most consecutive games played (312) March 4, 2017
Erik Karlsson Franchise record for most career overtime winners scored by a defenceman (4) March 9, 2017
Craig Anderson Franchise record for career wins by a goaltender (147) March 11, 2017
Team Record Date
Ottawa Senators Franchise record for most shots against in an overtime period (8) November 9, 2016
Ottawa Senators Franchise record for most consecutive penalty kills (35) October 22, 2016 - November 22, 2016
Ottawa Senators Franchise record for most consecutive games scoring 2 goals or less (12) October 28, 2016 - November 22, 2016
Ottawa Senators Franchise record for most shots on goal in a period in a playoff game (21) April 27, 2017
Ottawa Senators Franchise record for scoring the quickest three goals in a postseason game (2:18) May 17, 2017

MilestonesEdit

Player Milestone Date
Thomas Chabot 1st NHL game October 18, 2016
Mike Hoffman 200th NHL game November 11, 2016
Erik Karlsson 400th NHL point November 22, 2016
Erik Karlsson 500th NHL game November 26, 2016
Mark Stone 200th NHL game November 29, 2016
Erik Karlsson 300th NHL assist November 29, 2016
Mike Hoffman 1st NHL hat-trick November 29, 2016
Andreas Englund 1st NHL game December 3, 2016
Chris Neil 1000th NHL game December 10, 2016
Jean-Gabriel Pageau 200th NHL game December 17, 2016
Derick Brassard 600th NHL game January 1, 2017
Chris Wideman 100th NHL game January 14, 2017
Kyle Turris 500th NHL game January 22, 2017
Mark Stone 100th NHL assist January 31, 2017
Chris Kelly 800th NHL game February 2, 2017
Tom Pyatt 300th NHL game February 16, 2017
Mark Borowiecki 200th NHL game February 27, 2017
Kyle Turris 300th NHL point February 27, 2017
Fredrik Claesson 1st NHL goal March 8, 2017
Chris DiDomenico 1st NHL game March 9, 2017
Ryan Dzingel 100th NHL game March 18, 2017
Craig Anderson 500th NHL game March 25, 2017
Colin White 1st NHL game April 3, 2017
Dion Phaneuf 900th NHL game April 4, 2017
Jean-Gabriel Pageau 100th NHL point April 8, 2017

Final RosterEdit

Updated May 29, 2017. Sources: Ottawa Senators,[130] TSN,[131] CBS Sports[132]

# Nat Player Pos S/G Age Acquired Birthplace
41   Craig Anderson G L 35 2011 Park Ridge, Illinois
20   Mike Blunden RW R 29 2016 Toronto, Ontario
74   Mark Borowiecki D L 26 2008 Ottawa, Ontario
19   Derick Brassard C L 28 2016 Hull, Quebec
14   Alex Burrows RW L 35 2017 Pincourt, Quebec
5   Cody Ceci D R 22 2012 Ottawa, Ontario
33   Fredrik Claesson D L 23 2011 Stockholm, Sweden
1   Mike Condon G L 26 2016 Holliston, Massachusetts
49   Chris DiDomenico C R 27 2017 Woodbridge, Ontario
32   Chris Driedger G L 22 2012 Winnipeg, Manitoba
18   Ryan Dzingel C/LW L 24 2011 Wheaton, Illinois
39   Andreas Englund D L 20 2014 Stockholm, Sweden
67   Ben Harpur D R 21 2013 Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario
68   Mike Hoffman LW L 26 2009 Kitchener, Ontario
23   Jyrki Jokipakka D L 24 2017 Tampere, Finland
65   Erik Karlsson (C) D R 25 2008 Landsbro, Sweden
22   Chris Kelly C/LW L 35 2016 Toronto, Ontario
16   Clarke MacArthur LW L 31 2013 Lloydminster, Alberta
89   Max McCormick LW L 24 2011 De Pere, Wisconsin
3   Marc Methot D L 30 2012 Ottawa, Ontario
25   Chris Neil (A) RW R 36 1998 Flesherton, Ontario
29   Matt O'Connor G L 24 2015 Toronto, Ontario
44   Jean-Gabriel Pageau C R 23 2011 Ottawa, Ontario
13   Nick Paul C/LW L 21 2014 Mississauga, Ontario
2   Dion Phaneuf (A) D L 31 2016 Edmonton, Alberta
10   Tom Pyatt C L 29 2016 Thunder Bay, Ontario
9   Bobby Ryan RW R 29 2013 Cherry Hill, New Jersey
15   Zack Smith C/LW R 28 2008 Maple Creek, Saskatchewan
24   Viktor Stalberg LW L 30 2017 Gothenburg, Sweden
61   Mark Stone RW R 24 2010 Winnipeg, Manitoba
7   Kyle Turris (A) C R 26 2011 New Westminster, British Columbia
81   Phil Varone C L 25 2016 Vaughan, Ontario
6   Chris Wideman D R 26 2009 St. Louis, Missouri
82   Colin White F R 19 2017 Hanover, Massachusetts
57   Tommy Wingels C/RW R 28 2017 Evanston, Illinois

TransactionsEdit