I was going to title this article Flight of the Condra as we might be witnessing Erik Condra’s career starting to take off, but when I heard that some are calling him AnaCondra, well that’s golden.
With the Senators only two goals in Tuesday’s game, the seventh round (211 overall) pick in the 2006 entry draft is starting to show some promise. It’s not very often that late round picks are able to make the NHL, let alone an impact, but knowing that nearly everyone cheers for the underdog, the 24-year-old Condra will have plenty of fan support.
He was a prolific scorer in each of his four years of college hockey, playing for Notre Dame in the CCHA, recording 158 points in 159 games. Last season, he recorded 38 points as a rookie for Binghamton in the AHL. This year, before his call up, he was scoring at a 70 point clip in the AHL (46 points in 54 games). Since being promoted in mid-February, he has four goals and six points in 10 NHL games.
Assuming the pending restricted free agent re-signs with Ottawa, he will have competition for a roster spot next season, but it’s not like the Sens are loaded with scoring wingers. Depending on what the team brings in during the off-season, Condra will get a fair shake at regular NHL duty. Keep an eye on what could be another late bloomer feel good story.
Whenever I hear anything on Craig Anderson now, there is this voice in my head that sounds like Agent Smith from the Matrix saying Mister Anderson. Ottawa’s answer to their franchise long goaltending woes has been lights out since coming down from the Mile High hockey club. He has a deceiving win-loss record of 5-3 with the Sens, but his goals-against-average is a miniscule 1.49 and his 0.954 save percentage is surreal.
Nikolai Kulemin is in his third NHL season and the 24-year-old Maple Leaf has increased his scoring in successive years; from his 31 point rookie campaign to 36 points and his projected totals of 31 goals and 59 points this season. Over his last 31 games, Kulemin has scored 25 points, a 66 point pace.
In 2006-07, as a 20-year-old, he led his Russian Super L