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Every game is important from now on

Tuesday, 03.14.2006 / 12:00 AM ET / News
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Every game is important from now on
Patrick Eaves was among the 14 Ottawa Senators players participating in the pre-game skate this morning at Bell Sensplex. Photo: OSHC

by Todd Anderson

With the defending Stanley Cup-champion Tampa Bay Lightning in town tonight, Senators head coach Bryan Murray says he doesn't expect to have any "easy" games for the rest of the season.

"They're all going to be desperate games," Murray says. "Everything is tight going into the playoffs."

Mike Fisher agrees.

"It's never too early to treat every game like the playoffs," he said after participating in an optional pre-game skate this morning. "Our goal is to finish first and come playoffs, be in top form."

Wade Redden knows it is important to gain the best possible seeding.

"We want to catch Carolina (who leads the Eastern Conference standings) but we want to make sure we win our division too."

While he admits to keeping an eye on teams like the Buffalo Sabres, who are currently two points behind first-place Ottawa in the Northeast division with 89 points, and the Carolina Hurricanes, who lead the Eastern Conference with 92 points, Bryan Smolinski said he and his teammates control their own destiny.

"We just have to worry about ourselves."

Meanwhile, Murray continues to tinker with his line combinations to find the right mix. One line that worked well against the Washington Capitals on Sunday was the Jason Spezza-Dany Heatley-Patrick Eaves combination. Spezza spoke about Eaves' impressive debut with the line.

"He kept getting abused, and he kept getting up. He wants to get under (the opponent's) skin. That's great. It creates more room for us."

Eaves isn't the only player to have picked up his play.

"Depth scoring is key for a hockey club," Spezza said. "It's good that different guys are scoring at different times for us."

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

ATLANTIC DIVISION
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
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

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
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
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Anderson 14 13 8 .923 2.49
R. Lehner 9 12 3 .905 3.02