Gameday Journal presented by Monarch Homes: Game 62 — Oilers vs. Senators
5:15 PM: Today's Gameday Goodie is with Alberta native Clarke MacArthur who talks about the return to his home province and playing in the Heritage Classic.
5:00 PM: Chris Phillips spoke with the media ahead of tonight's game. Here's what he had to say...
4:45 PM: Here's what Cory Conacher had to say after today's practice.
Michalek - Spezza - Conacher
MacArthur - Turris - Condra
Hoffman - Zibanejad - Ryan
Greening - Smith - Neil
Methot - Karlsson
Phillips - Ceci
Wiercioch - Gryba
Hall - Nugent-Hopkins - Yakupov
Hemsky - Gagner - Eberle
Hendricks - Gordon - Perron
Gazdic - Smyth - Jones
N. Schultz - J. Schultz
Ference - Fraser
Marincin - Petry
4:00 PM: Sens head coach Paul MacLean met with the media after today's morning skate in Edmonton. Here's what he had to say...
On the lineup:
We'll go with the same group that we played in Vancouver, Anderson will start.
On the importance of building off the win:
You have to keep winning to get in and right now that's our objective. Take it a game at a time and a day at a time. This is our next game so it's the biggest game of the year as we like to say. We know it's going to be a difficult opponent and we have to make sure we come here with tons of respect for their ability to play the game and the speed they can play at and be ready to play.
On the distractions of deadline day:
It's the same on every team. When your team has been inconsistent it's not uncommon that a lot of people's name get bandied about but a lot of times that's all it is is names being bandied about. I think that's part of the game, it has been that way for a long time.
On letting the players prep despite the distractions:
The Heritage game was a different game to get ready for, a playoff game is different and different games in the schedule are different. This is another different game, we expect them to come to play. That's the expectation we have, that we're going to be here ready to play, the 20 guys we dress are going to give us a good chance to win the game. Once the puck drops we have to be prepared to play and that's all we're thinking about.
On Conacher playing on waivers:
That happens in hockey all the time. I played on waivers, it's not the first guy that's happened to. I don't think it's anything.
For us we're still trying to find our best team. We haven't won enough games and we're still searching for that and there's going to be casualties along the way. Right now we don't have what we want and that's hockey as well.
He has been very professional all year long and we just haven't found a way to play him more consistently than we have. Again, we're searching for our best team.
He has been very consistent, he has been one of our best players game in and game out, shift to shift. He's got 21 or 22 goals now. We have been very pleased with him... I think he has been as advertised. His play without the puck and his physical play is something we maybe didn't expect when we got him but for the most part we expected that he'd be in the 30 goal range.
On preparing for the Oilers:
We like to prepare our team as a priority but you have to respect your opponent and you have to know who you're playing against, what they're going to do and they have a lot of guys that can play good. Up front their forwards, if you turn over pucks to them, they're going to make you pay like every team in the league. We have tons of respect for what they can do. In saying that, we have to get ourselves ready to combat that.
10:00 AM: The Ottawa Senators return to action tonight when they kick off the first leg of an Alberta doubleheader against the Edmonton Oilers in Edmonton.
The Sens took down the Vancouver Canucks in the 2014 Heritage Classic on Sunday with a 4-2 victory. Goals from Clarke MacArthur, Erik Karlsson, Cody Ceci and a Colin Greening empty-netter provided the offence, while Craig Anderson was solid in his first game since February 8, making 29 stops.
The Oilers have struggled this season, posting a 20-34-8 record in 62 games for 48 points. They currently sit in seventh place in the Pacific Division. In 28 home games this season they are 10-15-3.
Edmonton took the lone game between the two in October which was played in Ottawa.
The Sens will have their morning skate at 11:30 AM in Edmonton (1:30 ET) and I'll have plenty of updates to follow including, but not limited to, lineup changes, players' thoughts on tonight's game, Sens TV updates, Instagram goodness and more.
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