Ottawa Senators Official Website FRANÇAIS Official Site of the Ottawa Senators debra canada
Great seats still available TICKETS TICKETS
  • RSS

Senators in market for Capital gains

Win over Washington would be ideal sendoff before NHL all-star break

Monday, 01.19.2009 / 1:41 PM ET / Features
By Rob Brodie  -
Share with your Friends

Senators in market for Capital gains
It's their last stand, so to speak, before the all-star break.

And the Ottawa Senators can think of no better way to glide into it than with a victory over the Washington Capitals at Scotiabank Place (7:30 p.m., TSN Team 1200). It's the Sens' final game before the National Hockey League takes a brief respite for its annual all-star game on Sunday in Montreal.

The Senators also want to keep riding the momentum of a productive week that saw them collect five of a possible six points, with only a home-ice shootout loss to the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night preventing a clean sweep after earlier wins over the Carolina Hurricanes and Atlanta Thrashers. Even at that, Ottawa rallied from a 4-2 deficit to steal a point from the Habs.

"We'd like to keep our point streak going and go into the (all-star) break on a positive," Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson said after the team's practice earlier today at Scotiabank Place. "Then we can really re-energize during the break and have a really good second half.

"Keeping a positive frame of mind is going to be important and it starts with a win tomorrow."

"It would be great to have a big win going into the break," added centre Mike Fisher. "It would give us something to build on and get excited for. It's huge for us."

Senators head coach Craig Hartsburg considers the match up with the Capitals "a big test" for his team.

"Tomorrow, to me, is a huge game for our team," he said. "We've got to come out tomorrow and play our best game. Against Washington, you're going to have to play your best game anyway.

"We want to go into the break on a positive so it gives us something to come back with. A good feeling that you know what, we've got a chance to keep this going. "

Senators centre Jason Spezza gave his teammates an anxious moment when he left the ice halfway through practice with stiffness in his back. But Spezza said later it's nothing that should keep him off the ice against the Capitals.

"I just felt a little tight today coming to the rink," he said. "When I got out there, I didn't feel good and there's no point straining it in practice."

Fisher, meanwhile, said the hand he injured blocking a shot Saturday against the Canadiens should not prevent him from suiting up against the Caps, either. He skipped the opportunity to defend his hardest shot title Sunday at the Sens Skills competition.

"It was swollen yesterday so I decided to take a day off," said Fisher. "I should be fine for tomorrow."

Around the boards

Hartsburg said forward Shean Donovan, who suffered a lower body injury when he fell hard into the boards during the fastest skater portion of Sens Skills, won't play against the Caps ... Defenceman Anton Volchenkov (upper body) will miss an eighth straight game ... The status of veteran blueliner Jason Smith (lower body) remains up in the air. "We'll see (Tuesday) morning with him," said Hartsburg. "He'll probably skate in the morning and see how it feels." ... Rookie goaltender Brian Elliott has been tabbed to make his fifth start in a row ... Fewer than 250 tickets are left for Tuesday's game.




1 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 214 184 110
2 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 259 206 108
3 x - DET 82 43 25 14 231 211 100
4 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 232 208 99
5 BOS 82 41 27 14 209 201 96
6 FLA 82 38 29 15 198 213 91
7 TOR 82 30 44 8 206 257 68
8 BUF 82 23 51 8 153 269 54


E. Karlsson 82 21 45 7 66
M. Stone 80 26 38 21 64
K. Turris 82 24 40 5 64
B. Ryan 78 18 36 5 54
M. Hoffman 79 27 21 16 48
M. Zibanejad 80 20 26 0 46
C. MacArthur 62 16 20 -6 36
M. Michalek 66 13 21 3 34
D. Legwand 80 9 18 1 27
A. Chiasson 76 11 15 -5 26
C. Anderson 14 13 8 .923 2.49
R. Lehner 9 12 3 .905 3.02