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Smolinski offers stability for Sens

Tuesday, 04.4.2006 / 12:00 AM ET / News
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Smolinski offers stability for Sens
Ottawa Senators veteran Bryan Smolinski has offered a steady influence of leadership for coach Bryan Murray this season.

by Todd Anderson

The Ottawa Senators had 16 players participate in an optional skate today before the team departed for Buffalo where they will meet the Sabres tomorrow night.

Among them was veteran Bryan Smolinski, who scored the game-winning goal in a 6-4 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers last night. Filling in for injured centre Mike Fisher in between Chris Neil and Peter Schaefer recently -- the 34-year-old's game-winner was the result of a perfectly executed two-on-one play with Schaefer.

Hours earlier, during the pre-game skate, coach Bryan Murray had stressed the focus required during odd-man rushes. Watching Smolinski make that two-on-one work with Schaefer last night was just one sign of what the veteran has provided for the team this year.

"He knows the game. He's played steady for us. He's a veteran guy and he's moved around (onto different lines) for me. When he gets the puck around the net, he puts it in."

Calling this year's edition of the Senators one of the best teams he's been on, Smolinski spoke about expectations for the rest of the season.

"The obvious thing is we all know what this team is capable of doing. I think we have great focus."

Another award for Emery

The NHL announced today that Senators goaltender Ray Emery is the NHL rookie of the month for March. The announcement comes a day after Emery was named NHL defensive player of the month after a record-tying 12-2-2 stretch.

Injury report

Fisher, Zdeno Chara and Martin Havlat all participated in today's optional skate.

Havlat's status remains the same, as he won't return to the lineup at least until his injured shoulder is re-examined by doctors on April 10.

Fisher, who has a sprained ankle, said he's beginning to feel better.

"I had a good skate, and we'll see how it responds. It's getting close."

Chara, meanwhile, was passing the puck and taking shots today, but he still doesn't feel game-ready.

Captain Daniel Alfredsson, who had the flu, was given the day off today, but he's expected to play in Buffalo.

Tyler Arnason will be a game-time decision due to a possible slight concussion.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

ATLANTIC DIVISION
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 FLA 54 32 16 6 150 122 70
2 TBL 53 29 20 4 140 127 62
3 DET 53 27 18 8 133 131 62
4 BOS 53 28 19 6 153 146 62
5 MTL 55 27 24 4 147 145 58
6 OTT 54 25 23 6 153 166 56
7 BUF 54 21 27 6 124 146 48
8 TOR 52 19 24 9 120 144 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Karlsson 54 11 48 9 59
B. Ryan 53 19 26 -2 45
M. Hoffman 50 23 18 5 41
M. Stone 52 16 25 -10 41
M. Zibanejad 53 11 22 -1 33
K. Turris 48 13 17 -11 30
J. Pageau 54 13 10 6 23
Z. Smith 53 11 5 7 16
C. Ceci 47 5 11 -1 16
C. Lazar 49 5 9 0 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Anderson 22 17 4 .914 2.86
A. Hammond 3 5 2 .900 3.10