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At the Rink blog

Senators to shift Zibanejad into the middle

Tuesday, 02.12.2013 / 12:53 PM

By Erin Nicks - NHL.com Correspondent / 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

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2012-2013 At the Rink blog
Senators to shift Zibanejad into the middle

OTTAWA -- Mika Zibanejad has played center and right wing during his time with the Ottawa Senators, but Tuesday against the Buffalo Sabres, he'll get a chance to play in the middle on the team's top line.

The 19-year-old will be will be flanked by Daniel Alfredsson and Milan Michalek.

Senators coach Paul MacLean said he wasn't concerned with where Zibanejad was playing up front.

"I don't have a lot of opinion but we have some good conversation about it," MacLean said. 'I believe he's a good center. He's got a good size-and-skate combo for the middle of the rink, and I like that in a center. The only the qualities are centers have to be good playmakers as well. So there are some things he has to learn. But right now, with the injury to Peter Regin, we're going to give him the opportunity [to play.]"

The Senators placed Regin (chest) on injured reserve retroactive Feb. 9. He will not be eligible to play until Feb. 16, when the Senators play the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Here are the projected lineups for the Buffalo Sabres and Ottawa Senators when they meet Tuesday at Scotiabank Place:

SABRES

Thomas Vanek - Cody Hodgson - Jason Pominville

Marcus Foligno - Tyler Ennis - Drew Stafford

Steve Ott - Mikhail Grigorenko - Nathan Gerbe

Cody McCormick - Jochen Hecht - Patrick Kaleta

Tyler Myers - Robyn Regehr

Christian Ehrhoff - Andrej Sekera

Jordan Leopold - Mike Weber

Ryan Miller

Jhonas Enroth

Injured: Ville Leino

Scratched: TJ Brennan, Alexander Sulzer, John Scott

SENATORS

Milan Michalek - Mika Zibanejad - Daniel Alfredsson

Colin Greening - Kyle Turris - Jakob Silfverberg

Erik Condra - Zack Smith - Chris Neil

Kaspars Daugavins - Stephane Da Costa - Jim O'Brien

Marc Methot - Erik Karlsson

Sergei Gonchar - Mike Lundin

Chris Phillips - Patrick Wiercioch

Craig Anderson

Ben Bishop

Injured: Peter Regin, Jason Spezza, Jared Cowen

Scratched: Andre Benoit

Quote of the Day

It's really exciting. I'm pretty sure that when I play my first game I'm going to be emotional. To be back on the ice playing a game, being in game situations, with all the routines and rituals I do before games and during the game, I feel like I'm going to be emotional. I'm going to be really happy.

— Montreal Canadiens forward Tim Bozon on playing for the first time since his life-threaning illness