Detroit Red Wings competitors: Senators take a step back in rebuild

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The Detroit Red Wings may not be too focused on their competition right now. The focus is on their own game and getting back on track after finally snapping their three-game skid with an overtime win against the Islanders.

The Detroit Red Wings are competing atop the Atlantic Division. They may trail the Boston Bruins, but the Red Wings are fighting and scratching to stay near the top of the division and prove they belong in the playoff conversation.

They are battling with some of the younger teams who are coming out of rebuilds. The Buffalo Sabres and Ottawa Senators are viewed as the two teams in the Division who are in similar spots. However, recent news points to the Senators’ rebuild being hampered.

There’s been a lot of news around the Senators organization as of late, and the layers just keep growing. Forward Shane Pinto was suspended for sports betting, which was a blow, as Pinto has been a solid young addition to the team.

On top of that, the team had to forfeit a first-round pick in an upcoming draft for their role in an invalidated trade involving forward Evgenii Dadonov. The punishment soured things for General Manager (GM) Pierre Dorion. He ended up getting relieved of his duties on Wednesday.

Detroit Red Wings competitor takes a tough blow to rebuild.

The Senators have been a big competitor of the Red Wings. Their rebuild was on a similar schedule, and the match-ups between the two sides have been fierce. While I do not expect that to change, there’s a chance that the Senators take some more time to get things back on track.

Especially given that they lost a first-round pick, which could wind up being a nice piece of ammunition to help the rebuild. However, with Dorion out, they will have an interim in charge in Steve Staios.

It’s no slight to Staios, but coming in and getting acclimated with an interim tag is going to make for a tough job as the Senators look to compete. Sure, the on-ice match-ups may continue to be similar to what they are now, and the Red Wings are still going to battle with them, but the long-term may not be as simple.

Detroit’s going to have a chance to surpass them in the rebuild races, which is shocking to say. The Senators are going to have to take a step back with things, given how things are going off the ice, and I’d bet it leaks into the on-ice product down the line.

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