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Posted On Thursday, 01.16.2014 / 7:56 PM

By Sean Farrell -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Neil not playing for Senators against Canadiens

Chris Neil
Right Wing - OTT
GOALS: 5 | ASST: 1 | PTS: 6
SOG: 54 | +/-: -5
OTTAWA -- Ottawa Senators right wing Chris Neil was left out of the lineup for the game against the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday.

Ottawa coach Paul MacLean said after the morning skate that Neil would return to the lineup against Montreal. He missed his sixth straight game Thursday; left wing Matt Kassian drew into the lineup.

Neil, 34, has not played since he sustained a lower-body injury on Dec. 30 in a collision with Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals.

Neil, who leads Ottawa with 99 penalty minutes, has five goals and one assist in 42 games.

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Posted On Thursday, 01.16.2014 / 2:25 PM

By Sean Farrell -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Neil to return to Senators lineup

Right wing Chris Neil will return to the Ottawa Senators' lineup for the game against the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday.

Neil missed Ottawa's past five games after sustaining a lower-body injury Dec. 30 when he collided with Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals.

Canadiens center David Desharnais will be a game-time decision. He was a late scratch with the flu Tuesday in Montreal's 4-1 loss to the New Jersey Devils.

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Posted On Tuesday, 01.07.2014 / 4:20 PM

By Sean Farrell -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Road to Sochi blog

Canadiens' Subban grateful for chance to go to Sochi

BROSSARD, Que. -- For months, P.K. Subban has been the subject of much discussion and debate by Canadian hockey pundits and fans about whether he would be invited to take part in the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

On Tuesday, the Montreal Canadiens defenseman got the call he and his boosters were hoping for.

Subban was named to Canada's Olympic team along with Montreal teammate Carey Price, bolstering to eight the number of Canadiens who will represent their respective countries in Sochi.

Montreal defensemen Andrei Markov and Alexei Emelin were named Tuesday to represent Russia, which will host its first Olympic Winter Games. Canadiens backup goalie Peter Budaj was named to Slovakia's Olympic team.


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Posted On Monday, 01.06.2014 / 2:20 PM

By Sean Farrell -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Gudbranson ready for Panthers, pairs with Jovanovski

MONTREAL -- Erik Gudbranson will return to the Florida Panthers' lineup Monday against the Montreal Canadiens.

Gudbranson missed Florida's previous five games because of a broken orbital bone. The 6-foot-5, 210-pound defenseman had surgery after sustaining the injury on Dec. 20 when he was struck in the face by a puck in a 5-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets.

He wore a full-face cage on his helmet at the Panthers' morning skate at Bell Centre.

"I was told it was a two-, three-week recovery, so it's two weeks [Monday]," Gudbranson said. "I feel ready to go, so it's fun to play. I'm excited to play. If I was worried, I wouldn't play. Obviously I'm wearing that cage for a reason. It's for safety and that'll certainly help me out. That'll ease my mind with it, but going out and playing my game shouldn't be an issue."

Gudbranson, who turns 22 on Tuesday, was partnered with Florida captain Ed Jovanovski, who made his season debut Saturday in a 5-4 shootout win against the Nashville Predators.

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Posted On Thursday, 01.02.2014 / 4:21 PM

By Sean Farrell -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Senators' Spezza to sit out again

OTTAWA -- Ottawa Senators captain Jason Spezza will miss his third straight game when he sits out Thursday against the Winnipeg Jets because of a hip flexor injury.

Spezza revealed the nature of his injury after the team's morning skate at Canadian Tire Centre. He said he sustained the injury Saturday during Ottawa's 4-3 win against the Boston Bruins.

"I just kind of lost my balance at the start of the second period on the boards and as I was falling I kind of pulled something," Spezza said. "I finished the game and felt all right and thought I'd be fine the next day. Then I woke up and I was sore."

Spezza didn't have a timeline for his return but said he feels like he is making progress and doesn't expect it to be a long-term injury.

"We want to make sure that I squash it so that it's like anything, groins, hips, you don't want them to linger," Spezza said.

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Posted On Thursday, 01.02.2014 / 2:58 PM

By Sean Farrell -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Road to Sochi blog

Ryan to use Olympic comments as motivation

OTTAWA -- Bobby Ryan's television viewing on New Year's Day got his 2014 off to a disappointing start.

The high-scoring Ottawa Senators right wing was watching Wednesday when the United States Olympic men's hockey team was unveiled at the end of the 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic.

Unlike four years earlier, when a young hockey player sported a 2010 U.S. Olympic jersey with his name on the back at the end of the 2010 Winter Classic at Fenway Park in Boston, Ryan did not make the final cut for the American team that will compete at the 2014 Sochi Olympics. The team was introduced following the Toronto Maple Leafs' 3-2 shootout win against the Detroit Red Wings at Michigan Stadium.

"Ultimately they decided to go a different direction so I guess as a player you have to respect that, but at the same time I thought I played well enough to earn a spot. But I can't change it now," Ryan said Thursday after Ottawa's morning skate at Canadian Tire Centre prior to the Senators' game against the Winnipeg Jets.

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Posted On Thursday, 01.02.2014 / 2:53 PM

By Sean Farrell -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Road to Sochi blog

Olympic spot 'surreal' for Jets' Wheeler

Blake Wheeler had more than a safe landing in Ottawa to celebrate Wednesday.

When the Winnipeg Jets arrived at their hotel in Canada's capital, Wheeler got a text message from his wife that he had made the United States Olympic team for the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

"It's kind of surreal, to be honest," Wheeler said Thursday. "Just playing in the NHL was kind of above and beyond dreams that I had growing up. It was pretty special for myself and for my wife and my family, so it was a pretty big day."

Wheeler has 15 goals and 16 assists in 42 games.

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Posted On Monday, 12.30.2013 / 2:34 PM

By Sean Farrell -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Capitals' Grubauer gets call for second straight night

OTTAWA -- A light workload the previous day against the Buffalo Sabres helped make it possible for Washington Capitals goaltender Philipp Grubauer to earn a fourth straight start Monday against the Ottawa Senators.

Washington coach Adam Oates decided to start Grubauer on consecutive days after he stopped 16 of 17 shots Sunday in the Capitals' 2-1 shootout loss in Buffalo. The 22-year-old German rookie held the Sabres scoreless through the first five rounds of the tiebreaker before Steve Ott scored the winner on Buffalo's sixth attempt.

"I thought he played a really good game," Oates said. "We outshot them 50 to something, 15, 16, and he didn't have a lot of work chances-wise, and I think that he's got plenty of energy for tonight."

Braden Holtby has two starts in the Capitals' previous eight games.

"It's a long year and there's going to be plenty of opportunity," Oates said.

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Posted On Saturday, 12.28.2013 / 6:52 PM

By Sean Farrell -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Bruins' Chara, Senators' Spezza late scratches

OTTAWA -- Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara and Ottawa Senators captain Jason Spezza will not play due to injuries when the teams face off Saturday night.

Ottawa defenseman Chris Phillips is also injured and will not play the second game of the home-and-home series between the Senators and Bruins at Canadian Tire Centre.


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Posted On Saturday, 12.28.2013 / 3:41 PM

By Sean Farrell -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Bruins adjust after losing Seidenberg for season

OTTAWA -- Tuukka Rask's NHL-leading fourth shutout of the season Friday in the Boston Bruins' 5-0 win against the Ottawa Senators may have postponed Niklas Svedberg's first NHL start.

Now, an injury to defenseman Dennis Seidenberg definitely has.

Boston coach Claude Julien said he had made up his mind which goaltender would start the second game of the back-to-back set against Ottawa, but he was keeping that decision to himself.

Rask, Svedberg and backup Chad Johnson were all on the ice Saturday for the Bruins' optional skate at Canadian Tire Centre. However, Svedberg was sent back to Providence of the American Hockey League on Saturday afternoon when it was necessary for the Bruins to recall defenseman Zach Trotman to replace Seidenberg, who will be out for the season with a knee injury sustained Friday.

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Quote of the Day

There's no discouragement in that room. There's no issues there at all to be honest with you. It's more about, 'Hey, it's opportunities for players.' And if we become that bad of a team because of one player, it's not a real good sign for our hockey club. So this is part of sports. It's part of hockey.

— Bruins coach Claude Julien on the loss of Zdeno Chara to injury
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