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Methot: It's do or die

Wednesday, 04.24.2013 / 3:16 PM ET
By Chris Lund - OttawaSenators.com / Inside the Senate Blog
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Inside the Senate Blog
Methot: It\'s do or die



They sure know how to keep things interesting, don't they?

No less than three times this season have the Sens been written off as dead in the water. Jason Spezza goes down? Can't score, they're done. Erik Karlsson gets hurt? Now it's definitely over. Craig Anderson is out? Print the lottery balls.

Yet, here we are with three games to play and the Sens are among those in the running for the final two playoff spots, and in the driver's seat to get one of those spots no less.

The Sens could clinch a playoff spot on Thursday night with a win as 54 points would ensure Winnipeg couldn't catch them in the Eastern Conference. After that it would be a matter of where they travel to for round one.

Marc Methot has only had the chance to play postseason hockey once in his seven year NHL career, but the significance of the timing isn't lost on him or his teammates. Win and you're in.

"It's do or die time, it'll be a big game for us," said Methot on Thursday's game in Washington.

There is plenty of reason for optimism in Ottawa surrounding that matchup. The Sens played one of their best games of the season last Thursday and took a 3-1 victory at Scotiabank Place over the Capitals. That performance coupled with personnel making their way back into the fold give the team reason to believe they match up well against Washington. That being said, there are still things that can be improved.

"With Cowen back all three of our pairings can handle what Washington has," said Methot. "We need to be stronger at the offensive blueline. We've been turning the puck over too much."

The defensive strength added by Jared Cowen's return is certainly an encouraging sign and could improve even further come puck drop on Thursday. With rumblings that Erik Karlsson is in the running to return to the lineup in Washington, the Sens would be greatly bolstered in every phase of the game.

"He may be the best defenceman in the world," said Methot. "I hope he's out there if he's 100 per cent."

Regardless of whether or not the Sens will have 65 in the lineup, much of playoff hockey is hitting your stride at the right time. Knocking out a couple of crucial wins late in the year could go a long way if they put themselves in round one.


More from Inside the Senate: Latest News/Features:

STANDINGS

ATLANTIC DIVISION
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
2 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
3 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
4 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
5 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
6 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
7 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
8 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
P. Wiercioch 6 2 2 0 4
M. Zibanejad 6 1 3 0 4
E. Karlsson 6 1 3 -2 4
M. Stone 6 0 4 0 4
M. Hoffman 6 1 2 -3 3
B. Ryan 6 2 0 1 2
C. MacArthur 6 2 0 -2 2
K. Turris 6 1 1 -2 2
C. Ceci 6 0 2 0 2
M. Michalek 6 1 0 -2 1
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Anderson 2 2 1 .972 0.97
A. Hammond 0 2 1 .914 3.44