WICHITA, KS – The goaltending depth throughout the Ottawa Senators organization will be tested in several ways during the next several weeks.
It all started Thursday when Craig Anderson left the NHL club to tend to his wife, who has been diagnosed with cancer. The move meant that Chris Driedger was called up to the big club and Scott Greenham was sent up to AHL Binghamton.
Things went from bad to worse last night for the Sens. Sometime during the first period, backup netminder Andrew Hammond sustained a lower-body injury, but managed to finish the opening period. Driedger finished the game, allowing five goals in a 6-3 loss to the Calgary Flames.
Senators General Manager Pierre Doiron told reporters this afternoon that Hammond will be out at least a week and possibly longer.
In an extremely selfless move, Anderson’s wife Nicholle, who is in the early stages of her diagnosis, encouraged him to call Doiron and discuss him rejoining the team after hearing that Hammond went down last night.
“We are very proud of Craig and Nicholle. He and his wife are dealing with a tremendous issue right now,” Doiron says. “And for him to be around his teammates, with his presence, he is going to be embraced by his teammates and it is only going to help us grow as a family and a hockey family.”
Then, this morning:
— Sens communications (@Media_Sens) October 29, 2016
#BSens sign goaltender Alex Vazzano to PTO.
— Binghamton Senators (@SenatorsAHL) October 29, 2016
Dorion said O’Connor and Driedger will remain with the team since it’s unclear how long Anderson will be with the Senators.
What this means for Thunder fans is that barring a trade or the signing of another goaltender, Drew Owsley will be the team’s starter and Greenham will be in Binghamton for the foreseeable future. Owsley is 1-0-0 this year, with a 1.00 goals against average and a .958 save percentage in his lone appearance, last Tuesday night against the South Carolina Stingrays. The Thunder return to action Friday, November 4 when they host the Utah Grizzlies.
Our thoughts, prayers, and well-wishes are with Craig and Nicholle Anderson, as well as the entire Senators organization.