But it won't be the Ottawa Senators.
The Senators started their run for the Cup, if one can call it that, against the Pittsburgh Penguins last night at the Mellon Arena in Pittsburgh, and from the way in which they played, they're likely to be knocked out in this first round of the playoffs. This is the same Senators team that has struggled through the last three months of the regular season. This is an Ottawa Senators team that has some serious stuff going on behind the scenes, that is divided, lacking in spirit, and certainly lacking in will and desire and drive.
This was emphasized to me when I caught about ten minutes of the Calgary Flames-San Jose Sharks game later on. The Flames played with drive, with spark, with élan, with a desire to win the game, and it showed in their play on the ice. (I hear they actually beat the Sharks 3-1 last night; good for them.)
The Penguins weren't that good last night, but Ottawa was like a somnambulent team that was caught in the headlights of the Pittsburgh offense. They couldn't put the puck past the Penguins goalie, Marc-André Fleury. This despite a bunch of power plays, including two five-on-three situations. Boy, is this team missing Daniel Alfredsson and Mike Fisher, for sure. At the other end of the ice, you had to feel sorry for Martin Gerber, as the Ottawa goaltender received no support, and two giveaways by his defense corps (Redden and Commodore, if you must know) cost the Senators the first two goals.
Can the Senators win this series? Yes, they probably could if they were playing like a team, and had a desire to win the Stanley Cup and all. The Penguins have a few weaknesses here and there, but Ottawa is playing like a team that just wants their hockey season to be over with, so they can lick their wounds, and have an early summer vacation.