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Senators confident heading into Buffalo

Tuesday, 09.05.2006 / 12:00 AM / News
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Senators confident heading into Buffalo
Martin Havlat, who is tied for the NHL playoff scoring lead with 12 points, addresses the media before boarding the team plane to Buffalo on Tuesday afternoon. Photo: T. Anderson/OSHC

by Todd Anderson

The Ottawa Senators believe in themselves. Despite trailing the Eastern Conference semifinals 2-0 to the Buffalo Sabres, the players feel they can turn things around quickly as the series shifts to Buffalo for Games 3 and 4 on Wednesday and Thursday.

Shortly before boarding their plane at Ottawa International Airport on Tuesday afternoon, several players shared their thoughts on what they plan to accomplish in the next two games.

"The biggest thing is to be sharp around the net," captain Daniel Alfredsson said. "We have to play our best game (on Wednesday), win, and move on to the next one. We feel we can go into Buffalo and win two games. I like our chances. You always look forward to these types of games."

"We have lots of skill on this team and we're going to need everybody tomorrow," Martin Havlat said. "We're still pretty confident."

As an alternate captain with the club, defenceman Wade Redden knows it's up to the team leaders to offer guidance in Game 3.

"I guess you look at leaders and what they're going to do -- how they're going to react. We have to pull together. We need to get that edge back. We can say we outplayed them and stuff, but we've got to get it done."

While Senators head coach Bryan Murray said he liked what he saw after re-uniting Alfredsson with Jason Spezza and Dany Heatley late in Game 2, he'll wait until tomorrow before deciding if they'll start the game together.

One thing that is guaranteed is discussion on how to solve Buffalo goaltender Ryan Miller, who recorded 43 saves in Monday's 2-1 victory.

"They have a goaltender that is playing an outstanding game," Murray said. "We'll have individual meetings and a team meeting and we'll talk about what we have to do to get back in this series. We have to simplify getting the puck to the net and create traffic. A lot of our shots were from the perimeter."

Volchenkov probable for Game 3

Murray said defenceman Anton Volchenkov could play in Game 3 despite leaving Game 2 after a heavy collision with Buffalo's Paul Gaustad, and then the boards.

"Anton has a stiff neck. I think he got a little bit of a whiplash when he spun around, but beyond that, I think he's going to be okay."

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